Social Security Disability claim denials can be very difficult for disabled individuals that are depending on the money as a primary source of income. Unfortunately, Social Security Disability claim denials are very common. Social Security Disability lawyers may be able to assist individuals in filing an appeal to begin receiving benefits.
Social Security Disability Application
Initial Social Security Disability claims should be filed as soon as possible following the incident in which an individual becomes disabled. A Social Security Disability application can be filed online or a Social Security claims representative can meet with the applicant to gather information. After the claims representative gathers the information, it is sent to the Disability Determination Services. It is here that eligibility and payment amount are determined.
Lawyer Assistance with Filing
Having an experienced attorney assist with the Social Security application process will help to ensure that the application is filled out properly and that all needed documentation is submitted for a better chance of being approved. This can be very helpful, as roughly 60 percent of Social Security Disability claims are initially denied. After filing, Social Security Disability attorneys can also help keep track of the claim status and assist with any requests for new information. Upon approval, attorneys can verify that the payment calculation is correct and submit any needed documentation for changes. If the claim is denied, Social Security Disability attorneys can help the applicant file an appeal.
Social Security Appeals Process
If a Social Security Disability claim is denied, the applicant has a right to file an appeal. A written request for an appeal must be submitted within 60 days of receiving the decision. The appeal can then be filed online, in writing, or at a hearing. If submitted online or in writing, a representative that was not involved in reviewing the initial application will review the details and make a decision regarding the claim.
A hearing may be requested after an initial denial or after an appeals denial. During a hearing, an administrative law judge will ask a number of questions. It is helpful to consult with a Social Security Disability lawyer prior to a hearing, as an experienced lawyer will help the applicant prepare for the questions that are commonly asked. An attorney will also help to bring witnesses and evidence into the hearing that may be helpful in getting the claim approved.
Social Security Disability Eligibility
There are several considerations that the Social Security Administration uses to determine whether an applicant is eligible for Social Security Disability benefits:
- If the applicant is working, the amount of money that is being made
- Severity of the disability and amount of time it will take to heal
- Whether the medical condition is on the Social Security Administration’s list of disabling conditions
- If the applicant is able to perform the job that was performed before the disabling incident
- If the applicant is able to perform other work
Conditions listed by the Social Security Administration as disabling include:
- Kidney failure
- Hematological conditions
- Most kinds of cancer
- Paralyzing spinal conditions
- Neurological disorders
- Autoimmune disorders
- Chronic respiratory diseases
- Mental disorders
Reasons for Claim Denial
There are several reasons that Social Security Disability claims are often denied, including:
- Errors or fraudulent information on application
- Disability is related to drug or alcohol abuse or dependency
- Monthly income is higher than acceptable
- Applicant has criminal convictions
- Disability is not long-term
- Lack of information or medical records
Social Security Disability Lawsuits Florida
If a claim is denied and a request for a hearing is denied, Social Security Disability applicants may be able to file a lawsuit in Federal District Court. This pursuit can also be undertaken if an Appeal Council’s decision is found to be unfavorable. It will be necessary to seek the assistance of an experienced attorney when filing a lawsuit to recover Social Security Disability benefits.
“Disability Determinations.” Florida Health. Florida Department of Health, 1 Jan. 2014. Web. 28 Oct. 2014. <www.floridahealth.gov/programs-and-services/people-with-disabilities/disability-determinations/index.html>
“Disability Report – Appeal – Form SSA-3441.” Social Security Administration. Social Security Administration. Web. 28 Oct. 2014. <http://www.socialsecurity.gov/forms/ssa-3441.html>
Moore, Tim. “Applying for Disability Benefits in Florida.” Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center. Social Security Disability. Web. 28 Oct. 2014. <http://www.ssdrc.com/state-florida-fl-getting-started.html>