If you receive a debilitating injury, and your doctor finds you permanently and totally disabled, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. Although you need to wait for one year or more to file, you can receive SSDI income until you hit retirement age and can collect Social Security.
However, the complicated SSDI process can take significant time. This is what you should do if you receive an initial SSDI benefits denial.
Find out why
Your first task should include finding out why your application received a denial. The Social Security Administration (SSA) may feel that you did not provide enough medical evidence of your disability, you may have missed or incorrectly filled out your information on the application documents, you made too much money to qualify, or you did not take your doctor’s advice. In addition, the SSA may just want additional information before making a decision.
You should receive a letter that outlines why you received a denial.
Your next step should include gathering evidence. Get your medical records and any paperwork that discusses your injury, including how you got it. Your doctor may need to fill out a residential function capacity form to support your claim. If you need to see a specialist or your doctor prescribed physical therapy or any other treatment, collect the records that show you followed your doctor’s orders.
File an appeal
You have the right to file an appeal and have your case heard by an administrative law judge. Therefore, after you gather your evidence, file an appeal. Prepare to plead your case in front of the judge.
For the best outcome, gather witness statements and other documentation that you are totally disabled and present it at your appeal hearing.