You may feel discouraged after being denied Social Security Disability benefits. However, do not give up yet. You have the right to appeal a denial from the Social Security Administration (SSA). However, you should strongly consider hiring a disability benefits lawyer to guide you through the appeals process.
Your first step will be to determine why your claim was denied. Were you missing medical information? Do you meet the SSA's strict definition of a disability? Did you fail to provide more information after the SSA requested it?
All of these are potential reasons that your claim could have been denied. You attorney will review your denial with you to determine exactly why you were denied so that you can move forward with an appeal.
The appeals process consists of four levels:
Request for reconsideration Your lawyer will assist you in asking for a reconsideration, the first step in an appeal. Through reconsideration, your claim will be revisited by doctors and claim examiners who were not part of the initial claim process.
Hearing Denied a second time? The second stage of the appeals process is a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. In this phase your attorney will prepare you to appeal your claim before a judge.
Appeals Council Review Denied at the hearing? You can request that the Appeals Council review the judges decision. At this level, the Council can deny your claim, deny you benefits or send your case back to have it reviewed by another judge.
Federal Lawsuit If your claim was denied once again, your final option is to file a lawsuit in federal district court
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Appealing a denied disability benefits claim can be a complicated process. Our Knoxville Social Security Disability lawyers have an intimate knowledge of the process and will guide you step-by-step through every level to get you the benefits you need.