Just over 30% of people who file for disability benefits get their claims successfully approved.
The rest of the applications are all denied disability for a variety of factors ranging from technical to medical. After all this, the median percentage (across the US) of those who do get accepted through reconsideration is just eight percent!
If you were denied there are a number of reasons why this happened. But do not worry, by knowing what the reasons were, it improves your chances for improving your claim in future.
You Have Been Denied Disability Before
Being denied for disability before may seem like a petty reason, but it is true. Many people who are processing claims will reject them if they see you have already been denied before.
The unfortunate part is, because of the high-volume of claims they receive every day, they likely do not have time to see why your claim was denied.
If you fall into this category, your best option is to actually go through the appeals process with updated information.
You Earn too Much for Disability
Income is a definite factor when taking your claim into consideration.
If you applied for Social Security Disability (SSDI), then it will depend if you have attained enough work credits to qualify.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) on the other hand is for exclusively low-income individuals and those who may be out of work for 12 months or longer.
You can also not be earning a monthly amount equal to SGA, or substantial gainful activity.
You Have Not Followed Procedure
If you were asked to bring in documentation or attend a medical exam and failed to do so then you risk being immediately denied.
The whole disability claims process may be frustrating and even seem like a waste of time, but if you do not keep in contact with the person handling your claim and follow the rules then you are just guaranteeing yourself a denial.
You Did Not Stick to Your Treatment
To prevent people from taking advantage of the Social Security system, it is a standard procedure for doctors to report those who do not show up for treatment.
If a doctor cannot assess if you are able to work or not, then the claim handler has no choice but to deny you. If you feel like you were mistreated or there was a misunderstanding you can always speak to the same doctor and use his testimony in your appeals process.
There is Not Enough Medical Evidence to Prove Your Disability Claim
It is essential that your primary care physician provides written proof for each time they have seen you about a condition that affects your ability to work.
Word of mouth will not suffice so ensure you have enough proof that your issue has been long-lasting and will continue to do so.
Along with medical evidence, it is important to have your doctor also write a letter stating his or her opinion about your disability and whether or not you are able to work with your condition.
Make sure you are completely honest with your healthcare provider. Also, do not exaggerate or play down your condition. Your doctor needs to know everything about your disability to give you the best documentation to submit to Social Security.
Your Disability is Not Severe Enough
If you will be out of work for a short period of time but will recover soon then you cannot get coverage.
The requirements stipulate:
- The condition must completely prevent you from working for a minimum of 12 months. YOu can either have been out of work for 12 months already or be predicted to be out of work for a minimum of 12 months.
- The condition must be severe enough to have a significant impact on your ability to do basic work-related tasks.
Administrative Errors Add Up to Denials of Claims
Of course, human error is also a potential factor. Maybe there was a smudge on a copy you sent. A clerk could have misread a key piece of information.
Whatever happened, be sure to check your application thoroughly and see if there were any errors or misunderstandings that could have lead to your claim being denied.
Just because you were denied disability does not mean you have to give up.
This time around read through the documentation and make sure you are checking every box. For the appeals process, it helps to enlist the help of people who know the system.