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If you get Denied for Disability in Florida and have to file an appeal
If you are pursuing disability benefits in Florida and have received notification of an SSI Denial or Social Security Disability Denial, you should not panic. The truth is simply that greater than seven out of ten claims are denied at the initial claim level, and more than eight out of ten claims are denied at the reconsideration level (this is the first appeal and it is also handled by a disability examiner at disability determination services).
Getting a denial, for the majority of claimants, is simply an acknowleged part of the process. What counts most, of course, is how a claimant responds to the notice of denial. And a proper response essentially boils down to:
A) Appealing the denial. You should always appeal the denial versus starting over and filing a new claim since a new claim will nearly always be denied again and will not move the case closer toward the opportunity for a social security hearing.
B) Filing the appeal quickly. There are two reasons for filing an appeal quickly. First of all, there is the fact that each appeal is subject to an appeal deadline. This deadline is 60 days from the date of the last denial notice, so the claimant should have plenty of time. However, getting the appeal sent in as soon as possible can avoid an unfortunate circumstance in which a person intended to submit a timely appeal and, for whatever reasons, missed the deadline.
The second reason for quickly filing an appeal, of course, is that the longer a claimant applying for disability in Florida waits, the more processing time they are adding to their case. Since there are two appeals between the disability application and the disability hearing, utilizing the full length of each appeal period (remember that each appeal period is 60 days) can add a cumulative total of four months of time to a disability case.
Essentially, this is completely wasted time and it is time that could be injurious to a person who desperately needs to get their disability benefits so that they support themselves.
If a claimant decides to file an appeal, the immediate issue will be who to contact first. This will depend on whether or not the claimant is represented. The following list of steps may help direct the individual who needs to file an appeal, depending on their representation status.
Filing a disability appeal when you have a disability attorney or a disability representative
If you receive a denial from the social security administration and have representation on your social security claim, contact your social security attorney or non-attorney disability representative immediatley. This individual will submit the necessary paperwork for your appeal.
If you were denied on the initial claim, your representative will send in a request for reconsideration appeal. This will include the appeal request form (form SSA-561-U2), the disability report form (form SSA-3441) and medical release forms that have been signed by you (form SSA-827) so that the disability examiner may request additional medical records if more documentation is needed.
If you were denied on a reconsideration appeal in Florida, your disability representative will send in a request for a disability hearing with a social security judge, i.e. a federal administrative law. This will include the appeal request form (HA-501), the disability report form (SSA-3441) and, once again, medical release forms (form SSA-827).
Your disability representative, prior to submitting the appeal, may call you to see if there is any updated information to address in the appeal submission, such as additional medical treatment sources, visits to your current doctors, changes in your condition, changes in the medications that you take, or changes in your diagnoses.
After the appeal has been submitted, your disability representative will generally send you copies of the appeal for your own records, while keeping a copy for their file (which often comes in handy in instances in which the social security administration claims not to have received the appeal).
Return to: Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions
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 answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.
Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
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?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria