Many people believe, based on personal experience or stories told by others, that Social Security denies all disability claims on the first application. The good news is that that is not true. There is no rule or regulation that states all first-time applications must be denied. However, the bad news is that the Social Security Administration does deny about 70% of all first-time applications.
After their application has been denied, the applicant has three choices:
* Give up. For most people this is not acceptable; they need and deserve the disability benefits.
* Submit another application. In all likelihood, this will only result in another denial and has been time wasted.
* File an appeal, otherwise known as a Request for Reconsideration. The appeal will be heard by a claims examiner at Disability Determination Services. Many people hire a Social Security Attorney prior to the appeal hearing. The attorney may spot problems with the original application and improve the chances. However, many appeals are denied at this level.
The next step is a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ). The judge will examine the claim, including any new medical evidence, and render a decision. Expect the judge to ask questions. There is a very good chance that the disability claim will be approved at this hearing. The bad news is that there is usually a long wait for a hearing date.
The third step in the process, if the ALJ also denied the claim, is to request the Social Security Appeals Council to review the decision made by the ALJ.
If all else fails, the last step is to take the case to Federal District Court. Fortunately, this is necessary in very few cases.
An experienced Social Security Attorney will be aware of all the deadlines and, most importantly, ensure that the proper medical information accompanies the claim. The sad fact is that some doctors are much better at filling out the forms than others, and this is a major component of the claim. In Philadelphia, the lawyers at LegalPhilly.com have the experience needed by disabled people who are attempting to get through the Social Security disability system. Visit the website or contact this Philadelphia Criminal Lawyer to schedule an appointment to discuss the available options.
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