You can request a reconsideration of your Columbus, OH, Social Security Disability application online, through your local Social Security Administration (SSA) field office, or through your Social Security disability lawyer in Ohio if there is sufficient time to do so. This step may be necessary if the SSA denied your application and you cannot work because of your disability.
Reconsideration is the first step in appealing a decision of your disability claim. In the past, this has not been a very effective step, and most people must take further action to get approval. However, the law requires you to take this step before continuing to a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge.
Filing a Request for Disability Reconsideration in Columbus, OH
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When initially evaluating a disability claim, the local SSA field office checks to ensure the applicant meets all the technical qualifications for disability benefits. The office then forwards the file to the Ohio Division of Disability Determination (DDD). It is at the DDD that a disability examiner determines if the applicant has a qualifying impairment and will get approved for benefits.
The first appeals step in the Social Security disability process, known as reconsideration, asks the DDD to take another look. You can request a reconsideration by completing Form SSA-561, Request for Reconsideration. You can complete this form online, in paper form, or with the help of your lawyer.
To learn more, you can reach out to the disability attorneys here at Berger and Green. Be sure to have the determination letter you received from the SSA handy if possible, as it should offer instructions for starting the appeals process.
Time Limits on Requesting Reconsideration
The Social Security Administration limits how long you have to request reconsideration. The clock begins ticking when the agency issues your determination letter, sometimes called a denial notice. You have only 60 days from the date on the letter to file your paperwork for reconsideration. If you miss this deadline, you will need to begin the process again from the beginning.
Understanding What Happens During Reconsideration
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A reconsideration is a second review of your application. The disability examiner who handles your reconsideration will start over with your claim, requesting additional evidence as necessary to determine if you meet the qualifications. In addition to the information and medical evidence used for the initial determination, they can also use additional evidence for their reconsideration determination. The DDD will not assign a disability examiner who worked on your initial claim to work on your reconsideration.
If you indicated in your request for reconsideration that there is additional evidence, such as new evidence or missed evidence, the disability examiner handling your reconsideration will likely request your medical records again. They may also ask you to attend a consultative examination with an independent doctor. This gives them a better idea of your condition as well as new information about your health status.
You Have Additional Options if Reconsideration Is Not Effective
Reconsideration is the beginning of the Social Security Disability appeals process. In total, there are four possible levels of appeals. This includes
- An appeal hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge;
- A review by the Appeals Council; and
- A Federal Court review
You must go through these steps in order, seeing the outcome of each step before going on to the next one. This can make the appeals process time-consuming, especially because less than half of people get approved during the initial and reconsideration process. The hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge, however, is often fruitful.
If you need help navigating the appeals process, the team of Ohio disability attorneys from Berger and Green can help you request Social Security disability reconsideration in Columbus, OH. We can:
- Request your reconsideration or appeal to a hearing on your behalf if there is sufficient time to do so
- Collect evidence to help prove you suffer a qualifying impairment or meet other criteria
- Represent you throughout the process
- Present a strong case during your appeal hearing
- Fight for the monthly benefits and back pay you deserve
Talk to a Columbus, OH, Social Security Disability Attorney
If you need help requesting reconsideration or otherwise challenging a disability denial in Columbus, OH, the team of disability attorneys from Berger and Green can help. We know how to navigate the Social Security Disability appeals process and will fight for the benefits you deserve. Call us as soon as possible after you receive your determination letter to ensure we meet all applicable deadlines.
Call or text (412) 661-1400 now to reach a member of our team for a free review of your case.