West Virginia residents that have applied for SSI, or social security disability benefits, and have been denied should be careful to avoid making certain mistakes afterward. A denied claim does not have to be the final answer.
One significant error to avoid is not filing an appeal after receiving a denial notification. Applicants, or claimants, should continue to pursue their claims if they believe they are entitled to the benefits. Statistics show that a large number of claims that are pursued through the appeals process are approved.
A first appeal will be evaluated as a reconsideration request, which is usually denied. However, once a claim has been rejected as a reconsideration, the applicant will be able to request a disability hearing. The odds that the hearing will go in the applicant's favor is high, particularly if the case is prepared properly, and there is an effective disability representative advocating for him or her. Federal statistics indicate that over 60 percent of claimants that are represented receive disability benefits after a hearing.
Another mistake to avoid is filing another claim instead of submitting an appeal. Many people may file a new claim because they are confused about the proper procedure. When this occurs, the claim is denied again. Claimants should file an appeal, which will eventually be considered and decided on by a federal judge and has a better chance of being approved. A hearing also provides a judge with the opportunity to actually see the claimant, whose testimony and any visible disability symptoms may be factors in the decision.
An attorney that practices social security disability law may assist clients that have been denied benefits. A lawyer may ensure that the appeal is submitted properly and on time and protects the client's rights and interests during the hearing.