A long-term or terminal condition can be emotionally and financially draining. If your condition meets the Social Security Administration’s criteria for a disability, you may be eligible for SSD benefits.
However, it is not uncommon for a seemingly valid disability claim to fall through the cracks. Understanding why your disability claim has been denied can help you build a strong appeal.
Common reasons why SSA might deny disability claims
To boost your odds of a successful SSD appeal, it helps to start by understanding why your original application was refused in the first place. Here are common reasons why the SSA might refuse your disability benefits:
- If your condition is neither terminal nor expected to last at least 12 months
- If your condition does not prevent you from working in your current job or finding another job
- If you have not provided enough evidence about your condition
- If you are not following through with your treatment plan without good cause
If the SSA refuses your claim, it will inform you in writing about the decision. The denial notice will also outline why your claim was denied. Once you receive this letter, you will have up to 60 days to appeal the decision.
Basically, the SSD appeal process has four stages as follows:
- A reconsideration request: This involves petitioning the SSA to reexamine your original claim. While petitioning for a reconsideration, you may provide additional evidence.
- A disability hearing: Here, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) will preside over an online hearing.
- SSA Appeals Council Review: after the hearing, the SSA may approve your disability claim or issue a second denial. It may also refer your case to the administrative judge.
- Federal court review: If the SSA refuses your appeal, you may be able to take your claim to the federal court for review.
A denied disability claim can be frustrating, to say the least. Understanding how the SSD appeals process works can help you build a strong case when appealing a denied disability claim.