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How to Appeal Denied Social Security Claims

When you are disabled and your claim for social security is denied, it can be a devastating thing. Many people are denied on their first application, and you do have recourse to appeal that denial. Learn how to appeal social security claims that are denied and how an attorney can help you get the benefits you need.

Appeal Social Security Denials

It’s important to know when to appeal social security claims denials, which usually means that the decision has been made in error. The SSA has been known to be too strict in its decisions, or to make errors in judgment. You have a turnaround of 60 days to complete and submit an appeal form after you receive notification that your claim has been denied. If you received the notice via traditional mail, you have up to 65 days.

What Is an Appeal?

In the appeal process, you take the opportunity to explain why you feel the decision to deny benefits was wrong. You outline your circumstances in more detail, provide backup for why you are disabled and unable to work, and why the information you’re providing makes you eligible for benefits. The SSA will then reconsider your claim.

The Appeal Process

The first step in appealing a denial is to file form SSA-561-U2, the administration’s Request for Reconsideration form and the SSA-3441-BK Disability Report Appeal form. These forms request your social security number, basic information and the reasons why your denial was, in your mind, unfair. You’ll then need to attach backup documentation to support your appeal.

Levels of Appeal

There are four levels in the appeal process. Your challenge could go through one or all four, depending on the nature of it. These levels are:

  1. Reconsideration—an informal review of the claim at the local SSA office.
  2. Administrative hearings before a local judge.
  3. National Social Security Appeals Council review.
  4. Federal lawsuit.

Backup Documentation

As you prepare your appeal documentation, think carefully about your claim. Consider why the SSA may have denied you, and what you need to present to get them to reverse that decision. See if you can figure out where they were misled about the severity of your condition. The more additional evidence you can present, the better off your appeal will be.

This is where having a strong social security and disability attorney can be extremely helpful. Attorneys who specialize in this area have seen many denials, and helped to appeal almost as many. Especially if a hearing or trial is needed, they will be a strong authority who can look at your denial and help you to put together an effective appeals package to ensure that you get the benefits you so desperately need.

If you are challenging a social security denial, we are ready to help. Read more about what we do, and get in touch for a review of your case today.

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