It is unfortunately quite common for those applying for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits to have their initial applications denied by the Social Security Administration (SSA). In many cases, the denial is not due to lack of qualifications but rather an applicant’s failure to take the right steps to demonstrate their eligibility.
A Sandy Springs SSI denial lawyer can help if you have already been denied benefits, or if you are starting the application process and want to ensure that you do not jeopardize a claim, we can offer sound advice on how to do so. A qualified SSI disability attorney can advocate on your behalf to give your claim a higher chance of success during the appeals process.
When the SSA issues a decision denying SSI benefits, the agency sends a letter that explains the reason for the decision. It is important to pay close attention to this letter because addressing the concerns in the letter will provide grounds for reversing the SSI denial.
The first stage in the appeals process is known as a reconsideration. You must request reconsideration online or file a Request for Reconsideration form within 60 days of receiving your first denial. You can also submit additional evidence to be reviewed during the reconsideration.
During a reconsideration, SSA staff members will review your file to determine whether the initial decision complied with guidelines. While the chances of receiving a different result after revision are slim, this step must be completed before moving onto the next stage.
If SSA staff members deny SSI benefits upon reconsideration, you may request a hearing before an administrative law judge. In many cases, the hearing provides the best opportunity to receive benefits because judges are not held to the same standards as the SSA staff reviewing applications.
Although the hearing is an informal proceeding, many applicants in Sandy Springs elect to have their interests represented by an SSI denial attorney. The hearing is often the last opportunity to present new evidence, and an experienced disability advocate can help ensure that the best possible evidence is available for the judge’s consideration. Our team can also help with meeting deadlines, following rules regarding the submission of evidence, and other concerns.
For many applicants, an administrative hearing is their last chance to reverse an SSI denial, but there are two more phases of appeal you can pursue in the event of a subsequent denial after the hearing. First, you or your Sandy Springs SSI denial lawyer could request a review by the Social Security Appeals Council.
If the Council decides that the judge’s decision should not be reviewed or overturned, you may challenge the SSI denial in federal court. You must exhaust all administrative remedies before taking the case to federal court.
While receiving a letter denying SSI benefits may be disheartening, in many cases, a denial is just a necessary step in the process of obtaining benefits. Appeals of denials often succeed, particularly at the hearing level.
However, the procedures involved can be confusing, and insufficient or improperly submitted evidence could provide grounds for continued denials. Therefore, if your claim for disability compensation was denied, it is a good idea to consult a knowledgeable Sandy Springs SSI denial lawyer. Call today to discuss your claim.