Applying for Social Security disability benefits is rarely an easy process. Your application must be complete and all information requested has to be provided. If your application is missing anything, you can be denied benefits on a technicality. When you are sick and unable to work, getting through the application process is often overwhelming. It's important to talk with your treatment providers about your application, as you will need to get proof of your disability from those that provide you with medical care. When you work closely with your providers, they will be able to give Social Security accurate information about your current disability and your ability to perform work.

Your Rights If You've Been Denied Benefits

In 2009, the approval rate for individuals who applied for Social Security disability benefits was 36.3% after the initial application. The number fluctuates from year to year, but is generally in the mid-thirties percentage rate. If you have been denied benefits after your initial application, it's wise not to get discouraged. Take a good look at your denial letter to see if anything was missing from your application. Your next step is to ask for a reconsideration to have your claim looked over again. Apply for the reconsideration, and provide any new information that was previously requested that is missing from your application.

Your Reconsideration for Social Security Disability Benefits

Your entire application will be looked over by new staff at the Social Security disability office for reconsideration. If your application contains new information that provides additional proof of your disability, you may be awarded benefits at this stage. Unfortunately, many applicants for Social Security disability find that they are still turned down for benefits at this stage. This is when many people choose to hire a Social Security disability lawyer, such as those found at Prediletto, Halpin, Scharnikow & Nelson, P.S., to get them through the rest of the process.

The Next Step Is an Administrative Law Judge Hearing

If your reconsideration is denied, you can request a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge. This hearing allows you to present your case for benefits in person to the law judge, and it's a good time to have legal representation with you. If you are nervous about the hearing, your lawyer will be able to guide you and answer any questions you might have. Benefits denied at this level are harder to get, so it's important to be prepared for your administrative hearing.