Has My Claim for Social Security Disability Benefits Been Denied in Error?

So the doctor has said that the pain you’re having was bad enough you shouldn’t be working anymore.  However, when you applied for Social Security Disability you were denied.  Your primary care doctor’s medical record may even clearly state in black and white that you can no longer work, yet you can still be denied.  If this has happened to you, you probably wondered to yourself, “was this a paperwork mistake?” and “What else do they want?”

Though it may seem black and white to you, to the Social Security Administration or SSA, there are many grey areas that can prevent your claim for disability benefits from being approved after the initial application.  Listed below are the top 8 most common frustrating “SSD black holes” people tend to fall into when applying for Social Security Disability benefits for the first time.

  1. Your doctor’s note does not provide enough information as to the extent of your disability. Though your medical record may state that you can no longer perform your current job, the disability determination board has to consider any and all jobs that you might be able to reasonably complete within the restrictions of your documented injuries and also take into account current income at that job, skill level, education and several other factors.
  1. The SSA can’t find you. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, understandably your phone bill is often the first thing that doesn’t get paid.  If the Social Security Administration can’t get a hold of you to communicate issues with your application or to calendar important dates and deadlines- though seemingly unrelated to your disability, you may be considered MIA and your claim may be denied.
  1. Your disability was based on a drug addiction or alcoholism. The disability determination board must consider whether or not you might still be found disabled if you stopped using drugs or alcohol.
  1. You don’t or can’t fully cooperate. If the disability services needs more documentation and you are unable to provide it by a certain deadline regardless of the reason, (and we know- there are many) your claim may be denied.
  1. You earn too much to be considered disabled. If you are like most, despite your menacing injuries and ailments you are still trying to work a full or part-time job during the application process, you can in fact make too much money to be considered disabled.    When you apply, if you are above the limit where it is considered “substantial gainful activity” or SGA which was $1,070 a month in 2014, then your claim may be denied.
  1. You haven’t followed your doctor’s orders. Not following prescribed therapies will stick out like a red flag in your medical records.  There are some acceptable medical excuses for not compliance, but unfortunately, not having enough money to pay for treatment, your opposing views on the what is the best medical care for you and even opposing religious beliefs are not included in that group.
  1. Your disability is not severe or chronic enough to meet SSD guidelines. In order to qualify for SSD the SSA must believe that your impairment is severe enough to last at least 12 months or result in your death.
  1. You have a criminal record. Certain conditions related to the conviction of a crime or imprisonment can prevent you from receiving SSD benefits.

If you have received a denial, first give us a call.  Our dedicated social security disability attorneys can do comprehensive evaluation to help you find the errors in your application and ways to prove your inability to work which will improve your chances of winning your case in front of the Administrative Law Judge.  Not only can we ensure the accurate and timely filing of the proper paperwork but our experienced trial attorneys will stand and fight for you at your very important day in court.  With the amount of claims being denied these days, you need an attorney who means business in your corner to get you the benefits you’ve worked for all these years.  (615) 425-2500.