How Many Appeal Levels are There for SSD Benefits?
If you are denied Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, you still have plenty of options. You are entitled to appeal the denial of an SSD claim. In fact, there are four basic levels of appeal. With the assistance of an experienced SSD benefits attorney, you can appeal the decision and potentially receive the benefits that you are owed.
The four levels of appeal are as follows:
- Reconsideration - Requests for reconsideration must be made within 60 days of the denial of an SSD claim. In most cases, your claim will be reviewed again by a new administrative law judge, and you most likely will not need to be present.
- Hearing - If you are not satisfied with the results of the reconsideration, you can request a hearing, which will be held at a location that is within 75 miles of where you live. At the hearing, you will be allowed to present witnesses. It is also advisable to have an attorney.
- Appeals Council Review - The results of the hearing may be appealed by requesting a review by the Appeals Council. Be aware that the Appeals Council may refuse to review the case if it feels that the results of the hearing were correct. The Appeals Council may render a decision itself, or it may send your case to yet another administrative law judge.
- Federal Court - The fourth and final option is to file a lawsuit in federal court. It is especially important to have top-notch legal counsel in this situation.
If you live in New Jersey and have been denied benefits, know your rights. Our experienced SSD lawyers can help you navigate the situation effectively.