Most workers make use of their contributions to Social Security when they retire. They can count on retirement benefits that can supplement their personal savings if they make enough contributions during their careers.
Occasionally, workers may need assistance from the Social Security Administration (SSA) before they are ready to retire. If someone develops a disabling medical condition, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits may be the only form of protection available to them. SSDI benefits can provide someone with monthly income despite their inability to work. Those rejected when they initially apply may benefit from appealing, as many applicants get benefits during an appeal.
Appeals correct initial SSA errors
Employees working for the SSA frequently err on the side of caution, as they operate under the assumption that someone does not qualify for benefits. The goal is to avoid the approval of fraudulent claims, but the real-world impact is that many qualified applicants do not receive the benefits they require.
According to information provided by the SSA, approximately 10% of SSDI applicants receive their benefits as part of an appeals process. The organization averages a 2% approval rate during reconsideration and an 8% approval rate at hearings in front of an administrative law judge.
Not only does an appeal potentially allow someone to get benefits when they otherwise could not, but they may also qualify for back-dated benefits. Instead of reapplying, they can appeal and potentially secure benefits going back to the date when they initially qualified.
Learning more about the SSDI application and appeals process can empower those dependent on benefits for basic household expenses after developing a debilitating medical condition.