Sunday, October 11, 2009



What is The Chance of Winning an SSA Disability Appeal?

Over 2 million individuals file for Social Security disability and/or Supplemental Security Income disability each year (more than 2.5 million this year, and a higher number projected for next year).

Social Security approves about thirty-five percent of those disability claims at the initial disability claim level and that means that about sixty-five percent of all individuals who file for disability each year will have to use the Social Security appeal process if they hope to win their disability benefits.

If an individual decides to pursue their disability claim, their first appeal level will be a request for reconsideration appeal. This appeal is basically an update of the information provided at the initial disability application.

Reconsideration appeals are sent to the same state disability agency as initial disability claims. Each Reconsideration is reviewed by a different disability examiner than the one who made the initial disability determination. However, reconsideration appeal determinations are made using the same rules and guidelines that governed the initial disability claim decision. This fact is evidenced by the low percentage of reconsideration appeals that become disability approvals. Current statistics indicate that only about fifteen percent of all reconsideration appeals result disability benefit being awarded.

Since there are so few disability approvals at the reconsideration level, Social Security has considered doing away with the reconsideration appeal completely. In fact, there are ten states that currently do not use reconsideration appeals.

The point of this discussion about reconsideration appeal denial rates is to show disability applicants that they are likely to be denied at the initial and reconsideration appeals levels, consequently it is easy to become discouraged. The majorith of claimants have to pursue their disability claim to an administrative law judge disability hearing for the best chance of being approved for disability benefits. However, this cannot be done without following the appeal process. In recent times, of all of the initial applicants who filed each year, only about 500,000 will have pursued the disability claim to an social security disability hearing. This is unfortunate; because about sixty six percent of all disability applicants who attend their administrative law judge hearing win their disability benefits.



Return to the Social Security Disability SSI Benefits Blog




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How often will social security review my disability claim ? (continuing disability review)
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Questions about social security disability hearings

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