Finding out your disability application has been denied can feel like a dead end. After all, you’re already struggling with your health, and now you’re struggling to get the benefits you deserve from the Social Security Administration (SSA). There are many reasons why your application may have been denied, and it’s actually quite common for the SSA to deny disability applications. We regularly meet with clients from Honea Path, Greenville, Spartanburg, Clemson and the surrounding area who have been denied disability benefits and who don’t know what their next steps should be. If you’re in the same situation, keep reading to learn more about what happens next after you’re denied your Social Security benefits or supplemental security income (SSI) — and what steps you can take to ensure you get the benefits you deserve.
If you disagree with a decision made by the SSA, you have the right to appeal it. However, you must begin the appeal process within 60 days of receiving the decision or you won’t have the chance to appeal. You can get started online, or if you’d prefer, you can download, print and mail the necessary forms. For more assistance, you can call the SSA or visit your local Social Security office in person. Additionally, the SSA has laid out comprehensive information about your right to appeal in this brochure.
There are four levels that your appeal can progress through: Reconsideration, Hearing by an Administrative Law Judge, Review by the Appeals Council, and Federal Court Review. If your appeal is dismissed at the Reconsideration level, you can request a hearing for your appeal to be brought before an administrative law judge. (To learn more about what a hearing entails, visit the SSA website.) If the judge dismisses your appeal again, you can continue to take it higher until your appeal is heard in federal court.
If the appeal process sounds intimidating, we’ll be honest: It is a challenge to submit an appeal on your own. Fortunately, while it’s not required, you are allowed to hire a representative to assist you with your appeal. This representative must be approved by the SSA before they are allowed to charge for their services, after which they can represent you in your hearing, before the Appeals Council and before a federal court (if your case goes that far).
Your representative will receive the same communication from the SSA that you do, and they will be able to prepare your appeal so it is as compelling and complete as possible. Depending on why your claim was denied — lack of medical evidence, incomplete information, missed deadlines or, in the case of those seeking SSI, discrepancies related to income — your representative will gather the necessary documents, talk to your physicians and consolidate evidence before presenting it on your behalf.
If you’re ready to hire a local attorney to represent you in the appeal process, J. Robert Surface is the man for the job. Before starting his own private firm, Mr. Surface worked as an attorney in the branch of the SSA dealing with disability hearings. He is deeply familiar with the SSA and all that is required to appeal the administration’s decisions effectively. Over the years, Mr. Surface has represented a wide variety of clients seeking disability benefits, including the parents of disabled children in need of SSI, disabled adults appealing the decisions of the SSA and veterans petitioning the Veterans Administration for the benefits they deserve. With years of experience taking the cases of disabled clients before the SSA, Mr. Surface is ready to represent you, too.
Ready to take advantage of your free case review? Contact us today.
If you have questions, we are available 24/7 at (864) 235-0886. There is no guarantee you will win benefits if you apply. Your claim may be bolstered if you are found disabled by Social Security. The office of J. Robert Surface, Attorney at Law is located at 513 E Greer St, Honea Path, SC 29654. He proudly serves clients from Greenville, Clemson, and Spartanburg.
513 East Greer StHonea Path, SC 29654864-235-0886