Overview of Disability

Disability Back Pay

Disability Requirements

Disability Applications

Disability Advice Tips

How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

SSD Mistakes to avoid

Disability for Mental

What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

Disability through SSA

SSI Disability Benefits

Disability for Children

How do I qualify for it?

Working and Disability

Disability Award Notice

Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

Disability Eligibility

SSD SSI Definitions

Recent Questions

SSDRC Disability Blog

Is it worth appealing a Social Security Disability denial by an Administrative Law Judge?

My own opinion is that if the individual who provided representation at your disability hearing is of the opinion that such an appeal has merit, by all means request a review of the administrative law judge decision (ALJ's make the disability decision at the hearing level).

My own observation, of course, is that very few cases are approved at the level of the appeals council (the body that reviews judge's hearing decisions). A case that has been submitted to the appeals council has the potential of overturning a denial issued by a judge. However, typically, the response a claimant and his disability representative will get back is "request for review denied". Meaning, in essence, another denial, at which point a claimant will need to consider whether or not they wish to pursue the claim to the next level, federal district court. The best case scenario that a claimant and his disability attorney can hope for, in most instances, is for a remand.

What is a remand? A remand is a second disability hearing and it occurs when the appeals council finds some deficiency or fault with the decision issued by the administrative law judge at the disability hearing. Remands are great in the sense that the claimant will get a second chance to have their case heard at the hearing level. They're not so great when one considers the fact that a remand hearing will be held by the same disability judge who denied the case in the first place. Human nature being what it is, some judges may not feel as though their initial decision was wrong, no matter what the reason for the remand is.

Should you appeal a denial by an ALJ at a hearing? If your disability representative (attorney or non-attorney) believes so, yes. However, even though the favorable odds from such an appeal are somewhat slim, nicely enough a claimant can still file a new disability application while their appeals council appeal is pending (cases sent to the appeals council can take a very very long time). In fact, your representative may advise you to file a new claim while you wait on the appeals council.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

Can a lawyer get my disability court date faster?
If you are younger can you get disability?
What Social Security looks for in your medical records
How many hire a disability lawyer?
How to file for disability in West Virginia
What a lawyer says at a disability hearing
Question about qualifying for SSI
Social Security Disability SSI and Chronic Pain
Social Security Disability, SSI, Mental Disorders, Functional Limitations
Chiari Malformation and Filing for Disability
Filing for disability with facet arthritis
Can I lose my disability benefits?
How to file for disablity in Nevada
The amount of back pay that you receive
If You Get Social Security Disability or SSI, Will Your Dependents Get A Check?
How to file for disability, tips to start

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

What mental problems qualify for disability?
SSI disability status
How to prove you qualify for disability
Qualifying for disability eligibility requirements
How Does Social Security Decide If You Are Disabled
How much does disability pay?
Factors involved in Winning SSDI or SSI Claims
Applying for disability with Degenerative Disc Disease
How long to get a Social Security decision letter?
What Does Social Security Consider To Be a Disability?
The amount of back pay that you receive
Social Security medical disability determination process
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How long can you receive SSI or Social Security disability benefits?
How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
How Long Does It Take To Get Disability Benefits When You First File?
Can you work if you get SSI disability?
Social Security Disability attorney fees
Am I eligible to receive disability benefits?
What are the non medical requirements for disability
How to get SSI
Approved for disability benefits
SSD SSI disability hearing decision