What Should I Do If I Am Denied Social Security Benefits?

If you have been denied Social Security benefits, you are not the only one. In fact, the Social Security Administration regularly denies more than half of the applications it receives. A denial is by no means an indication that you should give up on trying to obtain these crucial benefits. However, since appeals are time sensitive, you must act quickly and begin the process as soon as you can.

Why Does the SSA Deny Social Security Benefits?

If you did not already thoroughly read the SSA’s decision regarding your Social Security benefits, make sure you do so. Next, you should gather as much documentation as you can to address the reason for your denial.

Here are some of the most common reasons for a denial of Social Security benefits:

  • Your monthly income exceeds $940
  • Your disability will last less than a year
  • You failed to heed your doctor’s instructions
  • You were not in compliance with the SSA’s request for medical records
  • The SSA is unable to locate you

If you cannot afford your medical treatment, the doctor prescribed an ineffective treatment, you have a mental illness that keeps you from following your doctor’s prescribed treatment, or it goes against your religious beliefs, your failure to follow your doctor’s instructions will not count against you or be a valid reason for a denial.

About the Appeals Process

The appeals process for Social Security benefits involves several steps. Here is a brief overview of what to expect:

  • The first step in the appeals process is the request for reconsideration, which has to be filed within 60 days, starting on the date of your denial. Since this is performed by the same state agency that initially denied your application to begin with, it is not uncommon to be denied once again at this stage.
  • If you fail at the first stage of the appeals process, you will have to request a hearing, which will take place before an administrative law judge. He or she will have a substantial amount of power and is your best chance at having the previous decisions overturned.
  • If the judge does not overturn your denial and you wish to appeal his or her decision, you will have to file a request for a hearing before an appeals council. At this stage, you will be allowed to present more evidence for your case to be reconsidered.
  • Lastly, if you need to appeal the appeals council’s decision, you must file in your local district court.

No matter where you are in the appeals process, it is never too late to hire skilled legal help to get you through it as smoothly as possible so you can obtain the benefits you deserve.

Speak to a Social Security Disability Attorney in Tallahassee Today!

If you were denied Social Security benefits, you need to hire a knowledgeable Social Security attorney today to guide you through the appeals process and ensure you receive the benefits you deserve and need. At Anderson & Hart, P.A., you can count on us to effectively handle your case.

Call our team today at (850) 203-3041 to schedule a complimentary and confidential case review with one of our attorneys.

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