The negative feelings people have in response to denied disability benefits claims may include depression, anxiety and anger. After all, you have likely spent years making contributions to Social Security with each paycheck you earned. Now that you cannot work because of a disabling medical condition, you had hoped that Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits could help pay your bills.
Receiving a letter advising you that the Social Security Administration (SSA) denied your claim means you have to come up with a different solution. For many people, an appeal is the best solution in that scenario, but quite a few people simply give up and abandon their claims.
Why is an appeal worth pursuing?
Roughly a tenth of applicants get benefits while appealing
The SSA receives applications for medical conditions ranging from terminal cancer to neurological conditions. The professionals that make decisions about SSDI benefits have to carefully review medical records and work history records to ensure that applicants qualify. Sometimes, those denied benefits actually do qualify and will get those benefits when they appeal.
The SSA reports that, between 2010 and 2019, 2% of applicants received benefits following a reconsideration of their application. Another 8% of applicants started receiving benefits after an administrative law judge ruled in their favor. Nearly a third of those who eventually receive SSDI benefits secure the approval for their claims during the appeal process.
You can receive backdated benefits
If your initial application had technical mistakes or inadequate medical documentation, you may think reapplying would be faster than trying to correct those issues during an appeal. The process of submitting a new application might only take a few weeks.
However, the benefit of an appeal isn’t just about the possibility of an approval. You can also receive backdated benefits. You won’t just receive payments after your approval. Instead, you will receive lump sum payments going back to when you first qualified after submitting your application. Even if it takes a year or longer to appeal your claim, the delay involved in the appeals process can be worthwhile when you receive those backdated benefits.
Learning more about why people choose to appeal SSDI claims can help you better respond to an unfavorable benefits determination.