Why Was My Social Security Disability Claim Denied?
If you have applied for Social Security Disability insurance (SSDI) benefits, you’re probably in immediate need of financial assistance to offset the cost of your debilitating injury or illness. Being denied can be exasperating and confusing, especially after you’ve undergone the tedious application process a time or two.
Be advised that resubmitting multiple identical applications will not change the result. The Social Security Administration (SSA) does not use a lottery system to elect recipients of disability benefits. Rather, you are approved or denied based on whether or not the information provided in your application sufficiently meets (or doesn’t meet) specific criteria.
Before rushing to re-apply and attempting to persuade the SSA of the reasons you ought to be awarded benefits, take time to consider the possible reasons for your denial and tweak your application accordingly. If your condition truly does merit SSDI benefits, understanding common reasons for denial could increase your chances of receiving the assistance you require. Some of the most common reasons for denial include:
- Moderate Injury: The SSA is unlikely to award disability benefits to persons whose reported medical conditions and debilitating effects are not expected to last at least 1 year. Injuries or illnesses whose effects last less than 12 months are not typically considered by the SSA to be debilitating or severe enough to warrant disability benefits, though every case is assessed on its own merit. It is important to emphasize the extent to which your illness or injury limits your capabilities, especially if your injury has the potential to be viewed as minor.
- Income Level: When looking over your application, the SSA evaluates whether or not your injury or illness has prevented you from maintaining what it calls “substantial gainful activity” (SGA). This means if you are still able to work and rake in at least $1,170 each month (this number changes each year), you may not be considered disabled, consequently barring you from receiving disability benefits.
- Failure to Undergo Treatment: If your application gives the impression that you willfully induced your current level of debilitation, you are unlikely to receive benefits. Demonstrating that you have undergone therapy, tried medication, etc. in order to combat the effects of your illness or injury is important when completing your application. However, there are some excuses for refusing treatments that the SSA may find acceptable, depending on your case. (If you have refused, ceased, or stopped trying new treatments for your condition and worry that it will negatively affect your eligibility to receive benefits, contact a Social Security Disability attorney right away.)
Speak to One of Our Las Vegas Social Security Disability Lawyers
There are a variety of other reasons your SSDI claim may be denied. Our legal team at Shook & Stone is happy to speak with you regarding your application and help you ensure you are treated fairly by the Social Security Administration. We are prepared to do everything in our power to make the process as streamlined and stress-free as possible.
Call us at (702) 385-2220 or contact us to schedule a complimentary case evaluation today.