There are a variety of government programs that have been put in place to help the disabled maintain a basic standard of living, especially when their disability limits their ability to earn an income. The question is if these programs are out there, why are so many disabled still struggling?
One of the reasons may be tied to the fact that these programs can be difficult to apply for. The process is both extremely complicated and time-consuming. The other unfortunate statistic – those who do take the time and energy to apply often learn that their claim has been denied, plunging them into financial uncertainty and putting them on shaky ground. According to data from the Social Security Office, depending on the type of claim, as many as 65 percent of disability claims end up being denied for one reason or another.
At Hankey Marks & Crider, we understand that the process of applying for disability benefits is complex. It is easy to make just one mistake, list one discrepancy, and have your entire claim denied. We strive to help clients fight back against unfair rulings and work to appeal denied claims. Don’t let a denial or unfair ruling discourage you. Let the experienced team at Hankey Marks & Crider help you get back on track and work towards getting you the benefits you need. Contact our office at (317) 634-8565 to discuss the circumstances of your ruling.
Reasons for Claim Rejections
If you have already filled out the application for disability benefits, you know that it is extensive and includes a laundry list of extra documentation, phone numbers, and paperwork. The sheer volume of information needed makes it easy to overlook one tiny detail or forget to include a crucial piece of paperwork. Claims can be denied for a wide variety of reasons, including missing a seemingly minor detail. Some of the most common errors that lead to claim denials include:
- Factual errors on a claim
- Missing information
- Missing personal documentation
- Missing medical documentation
- Failure to submit all required paperwork
- Submission of the wrong type of claim
- Refiling after the previous denial
- Lack of communication, SSA can’t get a hold of you
Before you lose hope, contact an experienced attorney with Hankey Marks & Crider about your denial. Our legal team can review your submission, look for discrepancies, and help you determine your best course of action. Denial is not necessarily the end of the line for your claim, but you do have to know how to fight it, and Hankey Marks & Crider can help.
The Appeals Process and What to Expect
Before you attempt to refile or become frustrated with the process and give up, take some time to review your options. Denial is not an end-all, be-all situation. There is a process where you may appeal the denial and fight back to get the benefits you need. First, do not refile a claim. This can result in another denial and hurt your claim. If you have been denied, you are allowed to request reconsideration and attempt to correct mistakes or add documentation you may have been missing from your original application. If you have received a denial, here is what you can expect by way of the appeals process:
- Request for Reconsideration: A request for reconsideration means that you are asking for a reconsideration of your original claim that you filed. It is conducted by a medical consultant and examiner who had no part in making the initial determination to deny your claim. Your denial notice should contain information on how to request a reconsideration. If your reconsideration is denied, you may then request an appeal.
- Administrative Law Judge Hearing: If your reconsideration failed, you may next pursue an appeal, which will take place before an administrative law judge or ALJ. This typically takes place within 60 days of your denial. An ALJ is an attorney who works for the Social Security Administration’s Office of Hearing and Operations. You may present your case, and the judge will determine whether to overturn the denial or to uphold it.
- Appeals Council: If you are denied by an ALJ you can request an Appeals Council review of your case. The council will randomly select cases to hear and can either grant, deny, or dismiss your request for review. In most cases, the only time an appeals court will grant a review is when they find a flaw in the ADJ decision, or the decision was not supported by substantial evidence.
- Federal Court Review: In some instances, an appeal may go all the way to a U.S. District Court. A judge will hear the case without a jury present. A judge at this level may reverse a previous judgment, but in many instances, they opt to send the case back to Social Security for another review.
Appealing a denial is an extremely in-depth process. Navigating this process is often difficult, complicated, and confusing. An attorney has the experience handling the detailed paper trails Social Security is looking for, which can strengthen your case. What’s more, an attorney also has the necessary courtroom experience to help you through the course of an appeal. The legal team at Hankey Marks & Crider has the know-how to help you work through the denial process and maximize your chances of gaining a successful outcome.
Contact Hankey Marks & Crider for Help Filing an Appeal
You’ve just received a cold and unfeeling letter denying you your benefits. It is discouraging, and now your financial stability has been put in jeopardy. Right now, you need a compassionate shoulder to lean on. At Hankey Marks & Crider, we have the sensitivity to handle your case with care and the drive to fight back against an unfair ruling or a denial of your benefits. Our legal team can review your application for mistakes and advise you on your best course of action. We can help you appeal your denial and will work to strengthen your case.
Contact Hankey Marks & Crider today by calling (317) 634-8565. Let us review your disability claim.