Can I reapply for Social Security Disability (SSDI)? The short answer is yes. There is no fixed limit to how many times you can submit an application. However, the specific circumstances of your case may mean that submitting a new application is not your best option. Timing in conjunction with medical evidence and the counsel of experienced Social Security Disability attorneys can make or break your case.
When you submit an application for Social Security Disability benefits, it will likely take several months to receive a decision. If that decision is a denial, you only have sixty (60) days to appeal that decision. You are well within your rights to request a reconsideration of your case, but you must do so before the provided deadline.
According to the AARP, many experts say the chances of securing benefits are higher if you appeal than if you start over. This is why it’s a good idea to have a reputable attorney evaluate your case as soon as possible if you receive a denial. The Toledo, OH disability attorneys at Schaffer & Associates can help recommend if you should appeal your SSDI denial or file a new application.
Should I appeal or reapply for Social Security Disability?
Should you fail to appeal in a timely manner, you will likely need to reapply. If your medical condition(s) is unchanged since the first time you filed for benefits, you will likely receive another denial from the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA has strict criteria used to determine whether an applicant is disabled under their standards. In 2020 alone, 61% of initial applications and a whopping 86% were denied at the Request for Reconsideration level.
In the event that you receive a new medical diagnosis or experience a worsening of your condition, it may be in your best interest to file a new application rather than appeal the original denial. The Social Security attorneys at Schaffer & Associates in Toledo can help you gather your medical evidence to support your case in a new application. Having documentation of your illness(es) and support from your physician(s) is essential for winning your case.
It’s important to keep in mind that the date you file for benefits impacts any back pay you may receive if approved. Your protective filing date, or the date you file for benefits with the SSA, will change if you file a new application. Past due benefits owed to you will likely be less with a more recent filing date.
If you receive a second denial, either to a new initial application or a request for reconsideration (appeal), do not despair. The SSA has a series of steps that make up the appeals process to ensure your case is evaluated appropriately. If still they deny your appeal, you have the right to a hearing with an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Only 37% of cases were denied and 14% were dismissed at the hearing level in 2020. This shows how advantageous it can be to appeal instead of reapply when possible.
Even if the ALJ makes an unfavorable decision on your case, you can appeal their decision to the Appeals Council. If the Appeals Council denies your claim, the final step would be to take your case into Federal Court. Hiring an experienced Disability attorney is extremely beneficial in any stage of the process, but especially so if you are required to appear before a Judge and beyond.
With very few exceptions, you’re unable to file a new application for Disability benefits if you already have a pending claim. No matter which stage in the review process the claim is, if you want to file a new application, you’ll have to request to drop the original claim.
There are special circumstances in which you can request that the SSA reopen your claim should you miss your appeal deadline. The SSA may grant this request if you can show your reason for missing the deadline is due to unprecedented situations or circumstances out of your control. This could include natural disasters, sudden illness, or an error on the part of the SSA.
Contact Schaffer & Associates today
The Disability application and appeals process has many facets and can be overwhelming and complicated. Schaffer & Associates attorneys, in Toledo, OH have decades of experience filing both initial applications and appeals for SSDI or SSI. No matter where you are in the process, you can call (419) 350-8277 or send us a message to schedule your free consultation with a compassionate attorney.