How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay

Reconsideration of a Social Security Disability denial- what does it involve?

Filing a Request for Reconsideration

If you wish to still pursue your disability claim after your initial disability application has been denied, it is a fairly simple procedure.

1. You can file the appeal online at the social security administration website.

2. You can contact your disability lawyer if you are represented and that individual's office will submit the appeal paperwork for you to the nearest social security office, most likely the same one that you filed your initial claim at. After the lawyer completes the appeal, they will mail you a copy of the appeal for your records and keep a copy for their own file.

This has the added benefit of not only keeping all parties on "the same page"; it also serves to prove to SSA that the appeal was submitted in a timely fashion if, for some reason, they do not receive their copy of the appeal (or simply lose it, which is not an uncommon occurrence).

3. Lastly, if you are not represented, you can contact the nearest social security office and advise them of your desire to appeal your claim denial. That will put them on notice to send out the correct appeal paperwork to you.

Remember, if your disability claim (Social Security Disability or SSI) has been denied you will have sixty days to file an appeal. Note: You will have received a notice of denial with the date of the denial stamped in the upper right corner on the first page. This is the date to count the 60 days from.

This, of course, does not mean that you should mail the appeal in on the last day. The appeal actually has to be received by the end of the appeal period, so you shouldn't waste time in doing this.

Being Late on the Reconsideration Appeal (or any type of appeal filed with SSA)

If the Social Security Administration does not receive the disability appeal from you within the established appeal period (sixty days from the date of your denial), your request for reconsideration may not be granted...unless one of two things happens.

1. "Good cause" for a late filing is granted (such as a verifiable medical or family emergency) -- or

2. It can be proven that you did not receive the notice of denial and, therefore, did not have the opportunity to appeal (this also falls under good cause); this is why keeping copies of everything that is sent to SSA is a good idea and this is exactly why a disability attorney will usually keep a copy of anything that involves the case -- or

3. It can be proven that the social security office did, in fact, receive the submitted appeal. It does occasionally happen, meaning situations in which the claimant and their attorney insist that the appeal was sent in timely and the social security office later discovers the submitted paperwork tucked away in a file or on someone's desk.

If you are not granted good cause for a late appeal, or the social security office cannot find their copy of what you believe they really received, you will have to begin the Social Security Disability process again by filing a new disability application with social security. In other words, you will have to start all over again.

Whether you have a disability attorney or not, to avoid a late filing of a request for reconsideration, if you receive a Social Security denial letter immediately contact your local Social Security office or the toll free number 1-800-772-1213 and request an appeal.

You may also visit the Social Security office and get the proper paperwork or you may request that the appropriate forms be mailed to you.

Of course, once again, if you are represented by an attorney, you can contact your attorney and have them file the request for reconsideration for you.

What happens on the Request for Reconsideration Appeal

A reconsideration is fundamentally the same as a disability application. A disability examiner (a different examiner than the first one) will review the medical evidence. If the claimant is an adult, the examiner will also review the individual's work history to see if there are jobs to which the person can return, or job skills that will allow them to do some type of other work.

If the claimant is a child, the examiner will review the claimant's school records and educational achievement scores, in addition to IQ testing.

Procedurally, there is no difference between the process involved in deciding the outcome of a reconsideration appeal versus a disability application.

However, there are two distinctions that can be made between disability applications and reconsiderations:

1. Reconsiderations have an even higher rate of denial. While applications are denied at roughly a 70 percent rate, approximately 87 percent of reconsiderations are denied.

2. Reconsiderations are usually decided faster because most of the evidence has been gathered by the disability examiner who worked on the initial claim.

What is the true usefulness of the reconsideration appeal, and should a claimant even bother to file this appeal? Every claimant who has the opportunity should file a request for reconsideration because there still remains a possibility of being approved at this level.

More importantly, though, after a reconsideration has been denied, a claimant can request a disability hearing. And it is at this level where previously denied claimants typically have the best chance of being awarded benefits.

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on SSDRC.com

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

New and featured pages on SSDRC.com

Who can help me file for disability?

Related pages:

How to Appeal a disability claim denial from Social Security
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
What is a Social Security Disability Denial based on?
Are there ways to avoid being denied for SSI or Social Security Disability?
What does a Disability Denial Letter from Social Security say?
Reconsideration of a Social Security Disability denial- what does it involve?
What to do if you receive notification of a Social Security Disability or SSI claim denial
If you receive a Social Security Disability Denial quickly does that mean the case is weak?
What happens if my SSI or Social Security Disability Application is denied?
Social Security Disability Denied — The Reasons Why (medical denials)
Turned down at my disability hearing: should I appeal or refile?
How long does it take to get a decision on disability in California?
How to apply for SSI Disability in California
How much does it cost to hire a Social Security Disability attorney in California?

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

Permanent Social Security Disability

What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?

Who is eligible for SSI disability?

Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?

What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?

Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?

For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.