Does Every Social Security Disability Case Get Appealed?
If you’re just beginning to apply for Social Security Disability, or you’re waiting to hear from the Administration, you might be wondering about your odds of an approval. A common myth states that everyone is denied on their first try, and that you will always have to appeal. That’s discouraging to hear, and luckily it’s not true.
However, a majority of applications are indeed denied at the first stage of the process. About 67 percent of first-time applications are rejected, so yes, appeals are quite common. This is not due to any particular policy within the Social Security Administration; they aren’t intentionally trying to turn people away. The problem is that applications require a large amount of information and medical documentation before they can be approved, and often applications are simply incomplete or not fully convincing.
So, if you’ve been denied, what is the next step? Some people try again by filing a new application, but this is a mistake. Sorry, but you can’t just “beat the odds”. If your documentation was not considered sufficient to prove disability the first time around, you’re unlikely to get approved by simply filing a new application. If you’ve been denied Social Security disability benefits, the next appropriate step is an appeal. The goal is to pursue the appeals process until you can bring your case in front of a judge.
Once a judge hears your case, your odds of an approval are much greater. Only 35 percent of claims are denied at this stage.
Why are your chances better during the appeals stage? There are several reasons. One is simply that judges are able to put a face with a file number, and talking with you face to face helps them understand you and your condition much better. The other reason is that many claimants hire a Social Security Disability lawyer at this stage, and these attorneys are well versed in gathering medical evidence, putting together a convincing case, and communicating effectively with judges. Having an advocate on your side can, and does, make a difference.
On that note, give us a call if your claim for Social Security Disability has been denied. We can assess your case, help you understand the next steps of the process, and guide you throughout the entire appeals process.