The Supplemental Security Income Appeals Process

If you are denied SSI, it is important to understand your options for appealing the decision. While there are appeal instructions provided with your letter confirming the decision, the appeal process can become overwhelming. You are entitled to ask that your denial be reconsidered.

Supplemental Security Income Appeals Process

The appeals process is further complicated by how different states deal with appeals. In Florida, the first step following a denial of your SSI claim is to file an appeal that requests a reconsideration of the decision. Not all states include this step in the process. Most requests for reconsideration are denied, however, which leads to the next step in the process – requesting an administrative hearing.

Supplemental Security Income Administrative Hearing

Commonly referred to as stage two, an administrative hearing involves arguing your case in front of a qualified judge. This stage of the appeal process relies heavily on you being able to prove that your disability still exists and impairs your ability to earn an income in line with the qualifications for SSI. It should be noted that more than 50% of decisions are reversed by judges at administrative hearings, so it is definitely worth pursuing your appeal if your initial application is denied.

Social Security Disability Appeals Council

The Appeals Council comes into play should you lose your case at the administrative hearing level. This stage of the appeal process largely deals with events or considerations that weighed unfairly against you when you argued your case.

Federal Court Review of Your Disability Benefits Claim

If your case goes to Federal Court Review, it is important to understand that you are in for a fight. Having representation at this stage of the appeals process is quite essential. The decision on whether to uphold or overturn your decision is at the sole discretion of the judge. The vast majority of judges will consider your case from a strictly legal perspective, concentrating on how previous appeal decisions weighed the supporting evidence that you have provided.

Hiring An Attorney To Help

With so many potential stages involved in the appeals process, hiring an experienced attorney to support your case is paramount. Southeast Disability Advocates has extensive experience fighting on behalf of our clients and proving that decisions in denied SSDI and SSI claims were significantly flawed. Give your case the best chance of success by consulting with the experienced attorneys of Southeast Disability Advocates today.