Abromson & Carey, Attorneys at Law
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The disability review process and timeline for SSDI recipients

Qualifying and getting approved for Social Security Disability Benefits can be an uphill battle. Most claims are denied the first time that they are submitted. Although the chances of success often improve with each subsequent appeal, persistence is no guarantee of success.

It should also be noted that in order to continue receiving Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, the Social Security Administration will periodically need to review your case. How often this review occurs depends on your specific disability and the projected probability of medical improvement.

Remember that in order to qualify for SSDI in the first place, your disability must be expected to last (or has already lasted) at least a year or to result in death. When you receive your award notice, the SSA will likely include one of the following predictions:

  • Medical improvement not expected
  • Medical improvement possible
  • Medical improvement expected

If your disability is not expected to improve, your case will generally be reviewed one time every five to seven years. This is typically the SSA’s minimal level of review.

For cases where improvement is possible (but not necessarily expected) the SSA will want to check in with the recipient a little more often. Typically, cases with this designation are reviewed approximately every three years.

Finally, if the SSA believes that medical improvement is expected in your case, you could face your first review in as little as six months. Disability recipients in this category generally have their cases reviewed within the first six to 18 months.

Social Security Disability Insurance is a complex system with little tolerance for error. In order to give you the best chance of receiving and continuing to receive SSDI benefits, an experienced Social Security Disability attorney is an important resource.

Source: Asbury Park Press, "Social Security: How often will disability be reviewed?" Joanne Crane, July 20, 2014

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