If a person’s Social Security Disability Benefits claim has been denied by the Social Security Administration, there are a series of steps the person can take to appeal the decision. Many initial claims are denied, so people should not fret. If people are certain that their medical condition, injury or mental condition prevents them from finding and maintaining gainful employment, their condition is expected to last at least a year or ultimately result in death, they may still qualify for the various programs, including Social Security Disability Insurance, or Supplemental Security Income.
The first step in the appeals process is reconsideration, which will be done by the Administration by a person not involved with the initial decision. If that fails, the second step is a hearing between the person, any representation the person may have and an administrative law judge. If that fails as well, people may move onto the third stage in the appeals process, a review by the Social Security Appeals Council.
During this stage, the Council will initially look at the request for review, but if they believe the administrative judge’s decision was correct, they may deny the person’s request. If not, they will either make a decision themselves, or issue an order that the case return to an administrative law judge for further consideration. People will receive a letter regarding their decision regardless of the result.
The Social Security Disability benefits appeals process can be intimidating and stressful, and it is often helpful to have representation to help along the way.
Source: Social Security Administration, “Your Right To Question The Decision Made On Your Claim,” Accessed Dec. 28, 2015