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Are you wondering how to appeal a denial from the SSA?

Is this what happened? You applied for benefits and you received a denial of your application in the mail. Now, you are wondering how to appeal. The first thing to realize is that you should not give up. You have 60 days to appeal the SSA’s decision. Even if you feel upset or angry at the SSA, you cannot give up the fight after one or two denials of your application.

The only way to win your benefits is to go through the five step SSA review process and not give up. There are a number of stages at which your claim can be denied. The SSA denies cases because then people give up their claim. The more people who give up their claim, the more money the SSA saves. Don’t give up. Because that is what they are hoping you will do. If you can’t work, then appeal the SSA denial as soon as possible.


Most people who apply for SSD benefits are denied within 3 months of filing their initial application. In fact, most claims are also denied at the second appeal level. This means you will receive multiple denials of your claim during the appeal process. However, in order to keep your chances of winning benefits alive, you need to appeal the denials. And, you need to file a timely appeal. Learn more abut SSA application and appeal forms.

SSI claim denied APPEAL DENIAL

The first thing you need to do is read the denial letter. It will tell you that you have 60 days to appeal the denial. That is a serious time limit. It shouldn’t be hard to appeal the denial within a 60 day time frame. Especially now that you can appeal online at Social Security’s website.  All of the information you need in order to appeal is on their website.

If you don’t have access to the internet, then you can go to your local library. You can use the internet for free at the library. There, you can go to SSA’s website and appeal. The SSA’s website, the SSDI application and appeal paperwork can all be found online.


If you don’t have access to the internet, then you can still appeal a denial by going into the local SSA office. They have paper appeal forms there that you can fill out in writing.  If you cannot physically go to the local SSA office, then don’t worry. You can still appeal by telephone. The SSA has a 1-800 number that is free to call.

The SSA will send you the paperwork you need to appeal a denial. If you are blind, then they will help you appeal. Likewise, if you cannot read, then you can have someone help you complete the forms. Even if you can’t sign your name, the SSA will accept an “X” as a signature, if you have another person witness and sign the form.

The reason you want to appeal is that eventually, you will be able to have a hearing in front of a judge. At the hearing, you will be able to explain your mental and physical conditions to the judge. The judge is the finder of fact. He or she is not bound by SSA’s prior decisions.

The judge gives you the opportunity to speak about the impact of your symptoms on your ability to work. Additionally, the judge will review all of the medical evidence and your testimony, before making a decision about your benefits. But that will never happen unless you submit a timely appeal each time you receive an SSA denial.


By now you know the SSA denies most appeals. If SSA issues a denial, then what can you do to make the SSA grant your benefits? How can you appeal your denial and win benefits? The answer is simple. Go to the doctor.

Medical evidence is the key to winning benefits.  If you don’t have medical evidence, then you simply will not win your case. Objective medical evidence about your severe physical and mental conditions is they key to an award of SSD benefits.

The SSA and the judge, who makes a decision in your case, need medical evidence to rely on. They can’t grant your case just because you tell them you can’t work. Even if you have a visible physical condition, you will still need medical evidence in support of your claim. Find a doctor who will support you. One who will write a letter about your symptoms. If your doctor doesn’t support you, then you probably will not win SSD or SSI benefits.


If you don’t have health insurance, then you still need to see a doctor and get treatment. You can do it because we have resources that can help you find treatment options. When you appeal an SSA denial, make sure you submit all of your medical evidence.

For example, you could get treatment for physical conditions at free clinics. You can also see a doctor by setting up a payment plan or asking if they have low cost options for people with low income. You can also apply for Medicaid. Medicaid is a form of health insurance that many clinics and doctors accept.

Below, you will find a list of clinics and treatment resources in your state. You will need to call the offices and determine if they will work with you. At these places, you can also get mental health treatment from a counselor. You can also see a nurse or doctor. They can give you medication.

If you can’t afford private therapy, then there is group therapy. Finally, if you cannot afford therapy or treatment, then we have a list of free and low cost health clinics. Choose your state and call the free clinic for help:

We also have information about how, after you have seen the doctor, you can obtain a copy of your medical records for free. Take advantage of all of these services.


If you have medical insurance, then use it. Visit your doctor. Tell your doctor what is wrong. Then, get treatment and follow it. None of our resources will help you, if you don’t also go to the doctor on a regular basis. For example, you should go to the doctor monthly. Don’t say to yourself, there is nothing the doctor can do for me. Of course there is. Even if you have chronic pain, that can be treated. But, you need to establish the relationship with your doctor and ask for support in the SSA appeal process. We can’t go to the doctor for you.

doctor with records to appeal denial


Another important key to winning your hearing is knowing the rules of evidence. There are firm time limits on when to submit medical records. The SSA has issued a rule that all medical records must be into the judge five days prior to your hearing.

This means five “working” days. In other words, the time limit to submit records is SEVEN days prior to your hearing. If you submit evidence past the 7 day time limit, then you must have a good reason as to why it was not sent in on time. You must also write a letter telling the judge the reason as to why you are late.

Remember, everything must be in front of the judge and in the record one week prior to the hearing. There are good reasons for this rule. The SSA is dealing with thousands of hearings across the nation. It helps the SSA to have the evidence so the judge and experts can review it. The bottom line is this:  one week prior to the hearing is the last day you can submit medical records to the judge.


If you fail to submit records one week prior to the hearing, then the judge doesn’t have to admit them into the record. That means she doesn’t have to consider them or read them. The records just don’t make it in and that can make all the difference in winning or losing your case.

Don’t wait until the last minute to submit your records. Also, don’t wait until the last minute to give all of your records to your attorney so she can submit them. Prepare in advance and you will have a better chance of winning your benefits. Hire Cannon Disability Law to help you obtain the evidence that you need to win your SSDI and SSI benefits.


After you appeal your SSA denials, then you will reach the hearing stage. The SSA will schedule your hearing at the Office of Hearings Operations (OHO) that is closest to you. If you need to travel more than 75 miles to your hearing, then the SSA will pay you for your for mileage. However, you will need to request a form at the hearing office that you fill out. Once you fill out the form and get it back to the hearing office, then they will pay you for your mileage. Usually, they send you a check a number of months after your hearing is held.

You will be sent a “Notice of Hearing,” which contains the date and time of your hearing. Prior to the hearing, you can request that your hearing be held in person, instead of by phone or video. Either way, your hearing will be held before an Administrative Law Judge.

The judge will ask you questions. We prepare you for the questions that the Judge will ask. You will not be alone when you go into court. You will have your attorney with you. Chances are good that your lawyer will also ask you questions during the hearing. Therefore, you can prepare in advance to answer those questions.

If you want to know more about the hearing, then please read our blog. For example, What Questions Will the Judge Ask At My Disability Hearing, is a good place to start. You can access other articles about your hearing in our article, Questions About Your SSD Hearing.


When you contact our law firm, you will receive a free review of your case. If we accept your case, you do not have to pay any money upfront to hire us. The reason you do not pay us any money upfront is that we represent all of our clients on a “pay only if you win” basis. This means that if we do not win your case, then you do not owe us an attorney fee. It also means that if we win your case, then you pay us out of your back benefit.

What does a free review of your case mean? It means that we will answer your questions about your Social Security benefits for free. If you don’t know how to apply for benefits, then we will help you. Likewise, if you want to become a client or you are wondering if you have a good SSD case, then we will tell you.

But, a free review does not mean we are your attorney. First, we have to accept your case. Much of our decision on whether we take your case depends on what you tell us. Therefore, when you call, make sure you explain all of your physical and mental conditions.

Likewise, if you have a physical condition like back pain, then don’t forget to tell us about a back operation you had. Every physical and mental condition should be taken into account. For example, if you have anxiety, then tell us about that too. You want SSD and SSI benefits to replace your income and you want a great attorney to appeal an SSA denial. Therefore, contact us today.


If you need help filing an application for SSDI and SSI benefits. Or, if you need to appeal a denial of benefits, then contact Cannon Disability Law. We have been filing appeals on SSA denials for 30 years. Since most cases receive a denial, we know how prepare an appeal. Our goal is to provide the best medical information to the SSA, so that they don’t deny your claim. Instead, we want them to grant it. We want them to grant it as soon as possible.

If you don’t win your case on appeal, then we can represent you in court at your Social Security hearing. We will help you testify in court. If necessary, we can also appeal your case to the Appeals Council. Additionally, we file appeals in Federal Court.

Finally, we can represent you where you live. For example, we can help you if need an attorney in Utah or Nevada. Utah SSD benefit information can be found our website. Likewise, Nevada SSD benefit information can also be found here. Additionally, we can help you if you live in Idaho, Colorado, or California. Also, learn more about Idaho SSD benefit information and California SSD benefits.

Your future income is at risk if you do not win benefits. In order to fight SSA’s denials, you need a lawyer. Hire us. Dianna Cannon has been helping people appeal denials from the SSA for over thirty years. Brett Bunkall and Andria Summers also have many years of legal experience. Together, we have won over 20,000 SSDI and SSI cases. You can trust us to help you. We will help you appeal an SSA denial. And, we can to help you win your SSDI and SSI benefits.

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