Playing the Social Security Appeal Waiting Game

Law Blog

Being unable to work due to a medical condition can mean applying for benefits from the government. If you have recently been turned down for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you have likely been advised about the appeals process. Each person who is denied their benefits can file for an appeal and all applicants are advised to do so. The Social Security application process, the appeal process, and just about every other aspect of the Social Security Administration (SSA) is complex and it's far too easy to make mistakes that affect your ability to get benefits. Once you are turned on, read on to find what to expect while you await your appeal.

Watch Out for the Deadline

You only have a couple of months to let the SSA know that you wish to appeal an adverse ruling. If you go past the 60 days and fail to act, you might have to begin the entire application process all over again. With wait times for new applications lasting several months, filing your appeal before the deadline passes should be a top priority. It should be noted that if you have a good reason for missing the deadline, such as being in the hospital, the SSA may grant you an extension to file.

Speak to an Attorney

Social Security lawyers work to help you get approved by attending appeal hearings and by helping you explain your disability to the administrative law judge. As long as you are entitled to back pay, you can be helped by a Social Security lawyer at no upfront cost. The lawyer is only paid if you win your case

Working With Your Attorney

The hearing date may be months away, but your attorney will be working to prove your case while you wait. Be sure to keep in close contact with the attorney by providing them with a good phone number and/or address. If you don't have a phone, give the attorney the numbers of at least two trusted acquaintances. Additionally, the SSA will be contacting you by mail with important information about your case, so provide them with a valid postal address. If several weeks have passed since last hearing from your attorney, make contact yourself.

One of the biggest mistakes some applicants make is to stop seeing their doctors while waiting for the appeal. Continue your treatments and keep your appointments if you want to be approved on appeal. If your condition worsens, be sure to let your attorney know about it.

To learn more, speak to Social Security insurance services.


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