Social Security Disability Appeals

What if My Disability Claim is Denied?

Unfortunately, many Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims are denied—and not always because the applicant does not qualify for benefits. Mistakes in the filing process can lead to rejected claims. Your claim may be rejected if your condition does not match the criteria in the Social Security impairment listing, or “Blue Book,” even if your condition is medically equivalent to a listed disability. Generally speaking, it is very difficult to secure SSDI benefits, and, without the help of an attorney, many applicants find that their first-time claims are denied.

However, if your SSDI claim has been denied, this does not mean you are not entitled to benefits. There is an appeals process for individuals who believe their claim was wrongfully denied. The Chicago SSDI appeals attorneys at Woodruff Johnson & Evans Law Offices can help you navigate this process. With over a century of combined legal experience, we understand how the system works, what Social Security is looking for, and how to help you get the benefits you need. Our team is here to serve as your advocate and guide.

If your claim for Social Security Disability benefits was denied, reach out to our team for help with your appeal. Contact us online or call (630) 585-2320 for a free consultation.

How to Appeal a Social Security Disability Decision

Believe it or not, more than half of all first-time SSDI claims are rejected. In fact, certain statistics estimate that only about 37% of first-time applicants are approved. If your SSDI claim was rejected, you are not alone. Luckily, there is an appeals process for those who believe their claim was wrongfully denied. By appealing, you may still be able to recover benefits.

Typically, after filing your initial claim, you will receive a written response within three to four months. If your claim is denied, you will need to begin the appeals process if you wish to receive the SSDI benefits you are owed.

How the appeals process works:

  • First, you will need to fill out and submit the “Request for Reconsideration” form. The deadline to submit this form is 65 days from the date you received notice that your claim was denied.
  • After you submit the “Request for Reconsideration,” you will receive notice of either approval or rejection of your request.
  • If your reconsideration request is rejected, you will need to appear at a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ).
  • You may receive a decision at the ALJ hearing, though it is more common to receive notice of the decision by mail within 30 days of the hearing.

Unfortunately, the wait time for ALJ hearings in Illinois can be up to 17 months. However, most people who appear at an ALJ hearing ultimately receive benefits (slightly over 50%).

Trusted Representation throughout the Appeals Process

Just as filing an initial SSDI claim is complex and often difficult, appealing a denied claim can be just as complicated. However, our firm has helped countless individuals throughout Illinois appeal rejected SSDI claims—and win. While we cannot guarantee a specific outcome for your case, you can rest assured that our entire legal team will fight for you every step of the way.

When a disability prevents you from working, you may worry about how you will be able to pay your bills, make rent, or obtain medical treatment. At Woodruff Johnson & Evans Law Offices, we strive to reduce your stress as much as possible by handling every aspect of your SSDI appeal. Our Social Security Disability appeals attorneys can help you with everything from completing the proper paperwork to preparing for your ALJ hearing to representing you during the hearing itself.

Learn more about how we can help you with your SSDI appeal; call (630) 585-2320 or fill out an online contact form to get started with a complimentary case evaluation.

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