If a Social Security disability applicant in West Virginia or elsewhere around the country has his or her application or appeal denied, he or she has 60 days to respond. There is also a five-day grace period to allow for a response to be mailed out. Therefore, the appeal needs to be sent to the correct location within 65 days of a denial notice. However, it is possible for an appeal to be accepted even if it is not received in a timely manner.
For instance, if an individual never received the denial notice, it may be possible for him or her to file late. A late appeal also may be accepted if a person is mentally ill or has a physical limitation that made it difficult for him or her to file by the deadline. The loss of records due to a natural disaster or theft may also be a legitimate reason to send in appeal documents after 65 days.
If a claim is not filed in time, it may be denied outright. This means that a person would have to file a new initial claim for benefits. In many cases, it is more likely for a late appeal to be accepted at the reconsideration level as opposed to the hearing level.
Those who have been denied social security disability benefits may increase their odds of winning an appeal with the help of an attorney. In some cases, this may be because a lawyer may be able to file paperwork in a timely manner. Legal representatives may also have a good understanding of what type of information needs to be presented for an application to be approved. In addition to filing paperwork, an attorney may be able to answer any questions a person may have about receiving disability benefits.