Has Your Disability Claim Been Denied in California?
Has your application for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) been denied? Don’t lose hope. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the initial applications for disability benefits are denied by the Social Security Administration (SSA). Fortunately, however, there is an appeals process by which many applicants are later successfully rewarded for their patience and perseverance.
Today we will discuss some of the necessary steps to filing an appeal for your disability claim, including the benefits of retaining legal counsel through the process.
What Are the Benefits of Hiring a Social Security Lawyer?
While it is possible to go through the appeals process independently, hiring legal representation is highly recommended. Filing an appeal and potentially appearing before an Administrative Law Judge can be an overwhelming and complicated process that civilians may not be prepared to tackle on their own.
By hiring experienced Social Security lawyers – such as a member of the legal team here at Roeschke Law, LLC – you will not only have a higher chance of success but the entire process will be made that much easier for you and your dependents. As your legal representatives, our attorneys can assist you by analyzing your Social Security information and preparing a strategy suited to your circumstances. From there, we will file the appeal and gather relevant evidence to support your claim, including speaking with your physicians and other medical professionals. If necessary, we will also prepare your case for a court hearing with the Appeals Council and District Court.
What Are the Four Levels of the Disability Claim Appeals Process?
The Social Security disability benefits appeals process has four levels, though not every case needs to go through every stage.
The first step is to file a request for reconsideration. This step takes your original claim to different SSA representatives for review. A small number of appeals are approved at this stage.
The second level is to request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). The ALJ is an attorney serving the SSA. At this stage, having a lawyer representing your interests is especially important, as it will be necessary to argue your case in front of the judge. Approximately 50% of cases are approved at this stage.
The next level requires asking for an Appeals Council Review. Very few cases are approved at this stage, but it is worth trying if the previous steps have proven unsuccessful.
Finally, seeking a federal court review in a U.S. district court may be necessary. At this review, your lawyers will offer passionate testimony to the district court in a final attempt to see your appeal accepted.
Is There a Deadline for Filing an Appeal?
If your SSDI or SSI benefits were denied, don’t despair. This is not the final word for your disability benefit. However, you cannot wait long before appealing. There is, in fact, a deadline for filing an appeal if your disability claim has been denied.
The majority of appeals must be filed within 60 days of the denial notice. Please note, however, that some exceptions may apply. For example, suppose you were denied state disability benefits such as Paid Family Leave (PFL) or Disability Insurance (DI). In that case, you have 30 days to file an appeal after receiving your denial notice.
Don’t delay. Speak with a Social Security disability benefits attorney immediately after you receive your denial notice.
Are You a Veteran Whose Disability Benefits Were Denied?
Only veterans who have served in the United States military – whether it be active duty or in training – qualify for Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation. In addition to being a veteran, you must also have received an honorable discharge from service.
Provided that your disability was directly related to your time as a U.S. service member, you should be eligible to receive disability benefits. To establish this, you must prove that your disability is ongoing and has been diagnosed by a medical professional and that you suffered this disability while in-service.
The VA denies some applicants who otherwise should have been approved for disability benefits. Previously seen reasons for VA mistakenly denying compensation to veterans include instances of assigning the veteran with the wrong rating, mixing up the dates, or denying a connection between the disability and the veteran’s service.
Schedule a Free Strategy Session with Experienced Social Security Attorneys Today
Don’t give up if you’ve been denied disability benefits by the Social Security Administration. You have a number of options available to you for filing an appeal. However, there is a ticking clock for submitting your appeals, so you mustn’t delay unnecessarily. Speak with experienced Social Security lawyers right away to discuss your legal options for appealing the SSA’s decisions.
At Roeschke Law, our lawyers and legal staff have years of experience serving clients who, just like yourself, have been denied the benefits that they deserve. Founding attorney Kiel J. Roeschke is a member of the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR) and is well-respected as an aggressive advocate for disability rights. As your legal representation, we will guide you and your case through all levels of the appeals process in pursuit of the optimal outcome.
Don’t feel defeated by the denial notice. And don’t get overwhelmed by the complexity of the appeals process. Hire our legal team to fight for your rights today.
Contact our San Diego law offices to schedule a free consultation at 800-975-1866.