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The 4 levels of the SSDI appeals process

Many people in Missouri who apply for Social Security Disability Insurance have their initial applications denied. The U.S. Social Security administration denies SSDI claims for numerous reasons, and if you are among those who had their claims denied, you have the option of appealing the denial.

Per the SSA, you have up to 60 days from the date the administration denied your original claim to appeal the decision. There are four levels to the SSDI appeals process, and more information about each is below.

Level 1: Reconsideration

As the name implies, the first step in the SSDI appeals process is to ask for a reconsideration. When you do this, someone who had no hand in denying your initial claim takes a second look at your application to see if he or she comes to the same conclusion.

Level 2: Hearing with administrative law judge

If the second review of your application results in another denial, you may request a meeting with an administrative law judge. The hearing may take place within a reasonable distance of your home. In some cases, it may take place online.

Level 3: Review by the appeals council

If the administrative law judge also denies your claim, you have the option of asking for an appeals council review. The appeals council reviews all such requests. However, it does not agree to hear all such cases.

Level 4: Review by a federal court

When the appeals council decides not to approve you for SSDI or decides not to review your case, your final option is to ask for a review by a federal court.

Try not to feel dejected if the SSA denies your initial SSDI claim. Many applicants who have their original claims denied receiving approval for benefits after going through the appeals process.


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