Should I Appeal My Denied Disability Claim or File a New One?

appeal a disability claim or file new oneIf the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies your disability claim, you have the option of either appealing the decision or starting a new claim.

Which is the best route for you? Our Green Bay Social Security Disability attorneys explain the two options and when each is appropriate. Request a free, no-obligation legal consultation to get started.

Reasons to Appeal After a Denial

Generally, the best solution for many applicants is to appeal after their disability claim has been denied. The key advantages of doing so include:

  • Avoid adding extra time to the claim. The disability appeals process can take up to two years or more to settle. If you file a new claim when facing a denial, you may be adding more time, as your new claim may have the same issues and also be denied after filing.
  • The SSA does not have to reopen prior applications. Reopening a prior claim is done at the SSA’s discretion. If you file a new claim, you may not be able to receive backpay for the time you have waited since originally filing, even if you qualified as disabled.
  • If your first claim was denied, the SSA will likely deny your second claim as well, therefore you will still need to pursue an appeal to access benefits. If the same reviewer is assigned your second claim, he or she is likely to deny the new claim if it presents the same information. Appealing puts a fresh pair of eyes on your claim, which may be what is needed for approval.
  • The odds of having your initial claim denied are great, though outcomes may improve when appeals are pursued. Especially when reaching the ALJ stage of appeals – the judge has more leeway in making decisions on claims than the state medical examiners who initially review claims.

When You May Want to Start a New Claim

Reapplying for disability is generally a riskier option after your initial claim was denied. However, there are certain scenarios where starting a new claim is the preferred option.

  • Your condition has worsened since you filed your initial claim. The appeals process can take years to resolve, but the initial claims period lasts only three to six months. During this period, your condition may have worsened to the point where you now qualify for disability benefits.
  • You miss the deadline to appeal the decision of your initial claim. In most cases, you only have 60 days to appeal the initial decision, so if you miss this time limit, you need to file a new claim to pursue benefits.
  • You have appealed your initial claim but have received a denial at the ALJ (administrative law judge) level of appeals. After an ALJ hearing, there is only one more level of appeals, though you are permitted to file a new claim and pursue benefits that way.

If you believe filing a new claim may be the better option to obtain disability benefits, it is wise to consult with an experienced disability attorney before pursuing a new claim. He or she will be able to review your initial claim to determine why it may have been denied, and help you decide if a new claim is your best option or if it would be better to pursue an appeal.

Call Us Today to Get Started

If the SSA has denied your disability claim, you have options. Our legal team at Sigman Janssen is here to help you determine the right path and pursue your claim for the benefits you may be eligible for.

We offer free consultations and electronic signups with no face-to-face meeting required. If you decide to hire us, there is no need to pay for legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf.

We are standing by to take your call. (877) 888-5201.