For Minnesota residents and those across the country who are unable to work due to a disability, the denial of a benefits application can be devastating. Often, it can take a lot of time and effort to properly complete an application for Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI,, and hopes are often dashed when applicants learn that they have been denied. Fortunately, a first-time denial is not necessarily the end of the road.
Many individuals have the ability to appeal the Social Security Administration’s decision to deny an application. In fact, most applicants have to go the route of filing an appeal because the majority of first-time disability benefits applications are denied. However, it is essential that applicants understand that different levels of the appeal exist, so it is important that an applicant understand which suits his or her case.
When it comes to appealing a decision, applicants may select one of the following levels:
- Reconsideration involves requesting that someone not involved in the first review process reevaluates the application information, including previous and new evidence.
- If a reconsideration also results in a denial, the applicant could request an administrative hearing, which would involve a judge reviewing the evidence and application.
- The applicant could request a review by the appeals council if the judge involved in the administrative hearing also denies an application.
- In the event that the applicant does not agree with decisions made at the previous three levels, a civil lawsuit could be filed for appeal.
It can seem disheartening and difficult, but fighting for one’s right to obtain much-needed benefits is often worth it in the end. If Minnesota residents are struggling to make ends meet due to a disabling condition keeping them out of work and are having trouble applying for or appealing an SSDI decision, they may want to remember that they can seek help. Legal professionals experienced in navigating the application and appeals process could be helpful.