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My Social Security Disability Claim Was Denied, Now What?

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A denial of disability coverage is not the end of the Social Security Disability process. Even though it may be disheartening and frustrating to be denied needed coverage, the insurance company's first answer is not the final answer. You have the right to appeal the initial determination on your disability claim.

If you applied for Social Security Disability (SSD or SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you must appeal the denial of benefits within 60 days. Appealing the initial denial of benefits is not the same as submitting a new claim for coverage. You do not need to submit a brand new claim after an initial denial to have your claim reconsidered; you must request an appeal. An experienced disability lawyer can explain the difference between an appeal and a new application for benefits.

Do not think that just because your initial claim was denied that your quest for benefits is hopeless. As a matter of fact, more than half of claims for SSDI are denied in the first round of the process. Common reasons for denial include a technical denial - you make too much money or you haven't worked enough to pay into the system to become eligible for SSDI benefits - or incomplete records.

Working with an experienced disability lawyer on your initial application for benefits can help you ensure that the information needed to approve your claim is included in your application packet. Your disability insurance lawyer can also serve as the primary contact for dealings with the Social Security Administration. Often, claims are denied because requests for more information or for additional follow up by the Administration are unanswered by claimants.

For more information on the appropriate steps to take following a denied disability claim, please see "Expert Advice For What To Do When Your Disability Claim is Denied." If you have questions about filing an initial disability application or appealing the denial of benefits, please contact our firm for a free consultation.

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