People find themselves in need of Social Security Disability benefits for many different reasons. Perhaps you got hurt at work, suffering a traumatic or repetitive stress injury. Maybe you experienced a motor vehicle collision that resulted in permanent injury. Perhaps a progressive illness has left you unable to work or care for yourself. Whatever the reason, you believe that Social Security Disability will help you survive, only to find your application denied.
Most likely, that denial came after a long waiting period. Application processing can take a very long time, leaving you financially vulnerable and worried. A denial can feel disheartening. Instead of giving up, you need to push back. You can file an appeal if your benefits are denied. It's the only way to connect with the benefits you deserve in many cases.
Start preparing the appeal right away
You have a limited amount of time to file an appeal, so it's important to start the process immediately. You only have 60 days to request a formal review of the decision. During that time, you should look over all the forms and documents you submitted initially.
If you know the reason for the denial, that can help you prepare a better appeal. You may need to revisit doctors and make copies of your medical records to make sure you're ready for an appeal. It's important you understand that you also have the right to legal representation to argue your case for benefits.
You need medical documentation to support your appeal
Sometimes, a denial is due to a simple error on your paperwork. Other times, doctors may have worded statements improperly or you may have failed to gather adequate medical documentation. Whatever the reason, your appeal will give you an opportunity to present evidence that demonstrates your disability and need for Social Security Disability benefits.
You should compile all of the relevant medical records, including hospital stays, treatment records and notes from physicians. You will also need full names, addresses and contact information of doctors involved in your treatment and ongoing care. Any results from tests can also help. You should put together a list of your medications, the treatments you need, and impacts on your work and life caused by the condition.
Get the support you need to push forward with an appeal
It can be emotionally taxing and stressful to fight for the benefits you need due to a disability. Make sure you don't let the stress of the process impact your health, physical or mental. Support from the right professionals, as well as from your loved ones and friends, can help you handle this complicated and frustrating process.