The Vastness of the Law

Decoding Your SSDI Denial Letter

After you apply for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits (SSDI), you might receive a denial letter. These letters are very common. Getting the letter is one thing, understanding it is another. Social security attorneys can help you understand the denial letter and take the next steps to get your benefits.

Decode Your Denial Letter

A denial letter reads as a lot of legal jargon at first, but there are key phrases in it which act as clues for your rejection reason. Your social security disability attorney will explain exactly why you were denied benefits, but it helps if you have a general idea before going to your first consultation. The phrase "non-severe" in a denial letter, for instance, means the Social Security Administration (SSA) does not believe you have a severe medical condition. If you see "does not meet an impairment listing" in your letter, that means your condition isn't covered by the SSA's official impairment listing. However, having a condition outside of this listing does not mean you'll never quality for benefits. Your disability attorney will work to prove you're entitled to benefits in this case. Your denial letter may mention your ability to work as you did before or in another type of job, one that takes your current limitations into account. If the SSA decides you can work in some way, they can deny your disability claim.

Note Your Appeal Deadline

Even if you don't fully understand the denial letter, there is a date you need to take note of in the upper-right corner. This is the notice date. You have just 60 days from the notice date to file an appeal of your denial with the SSA. While the denial letter contains information on how to file an appeal, this can be difficult to do on your own. Work with a disability benefits attorney for help with your appeal. A disability attorney will prepare the appeals paperwork, gather the documentation you need, and guide you through the process. If you have any questions, they will be able to answer them for you.

While getting an SSA denial letter after applying for SSDI is discouraging, it's not the final word on your disability benefits. The SSA denies many applications every year, and some of these denials are overturned in the appeals process. Speak to a disability attorney for immediate help after you receive an SSDI denial letter.