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Speaking with Your Lakeland Social Security Lawyer about Appeals

Applying for Social Security disability does not always result in being awarded SSD benefits, and a Lakeland Social Security lawyer can help. The decision made by the Social Security Administration regarding the application for benefits may be appealed if initially denied. The appellate process might result in an approval, and it is a necessary step for many applicants.

Administrative Review

SSD benefit eligibility, changes in the amount of benefits, or termination of existing benefits are the culmination of an administrative review. Certain factors are considered such as the type of disability the applicant has, their, age and educational level, as well as the length of time the disability will persist. Medical records that accompany the application are reviewed. The medical reason for disability is compared to those found in the Listing of Impairments, a formal list used as a guide by the SSA.

Listing of Impairments

Disabilities found on the Listing of Impairments are graded according to their severity and range from not severe to incapacitating. The extent to which the disability causes the claimant to be severely impaired lays the groundwork for SSD approval.

Criteria for Impairments

The listing specifies the level of impairment one may suffer due to a medical condition. The severity of the condition is evaluated by set criteria. If the applicant meets the criteria or exceeds them, the reviewer will consider that the claimant is unable to work, and one’s past work experience, age, or education will not be included in the determination. Conversely, if the applicant does not meet the criteria, the reviewer considers additional criteria. A Lakeland Social Security lawyer may provide insight into why an applicant’s impairment was considered inadequate.

Equaling the Impairment Level

The reviewer may consider the impairment the applicant has and determine if it equals that of a similar one on the listing. The reason this is done is that the SSA cannot list all impairments that possibly exist. If there is parity between the claimant’s impairment and those listed, the claimant will be awarded disability benefits. Certain factors are considered. If the individual suffers from an impairment that is not severe enough to cause a substantial disability on its own but exists alongside other impairments that together cause significant disability, the claimant might be awarded benefits. A Social Security lawyer might assist an applicant in providing evidence of the impairments he or she wishes the reviewer to consider.

Reasons for Rejection

The reviewer bases his or her decision on the medical records provided. If the records fail to provide sufficient information for benefits to be awarded, this would be noted in the rejection letter the applicant receives. In addition, if the impairment is expected to last less than one year, the application will be rejected. The applicant may wish to review the additional details found in his or her SSA file. A Lakeland Social Security lawyer may help the applicant in requesting and examining the file.

SSA File Contents

Once the file is received, a Lakeland Social Security lawyer may help by examining the contents for accuracy. Statements or facts that are erroneous need to be corrected in the appeal since errors may cause the application to have been denied. Medical records are essential to a favorable outcome and, if a physician’s records are incomplete or contain inaccurate information, this must be corrected. In addition, if medical records that prove the claimant’s case were inadvertently not provided for consideration, they must be included in the appeal.

Ability to Work

The reviewer will use the applicant’s impairment to determine if the claimant can work at the job he or she held in the past. If this is not the case, the next step is to determine if the applicant can do any work. If, despite the impairments, one can work at some job, the application for benefits may be denied. A Lakeland Social Security lawyer can help the appellant compile evidence that not only is returning to prior employment impossible, but working at other jobs may also be impossible. The other jobs do not necessarily equal the pay or skill of former work. A Lakeland Social Security lawyer may be able to supply information that was not available on the application to show that other work, despite some differences, may not be possible. This can help reverse the initial denial on appeal.

How Age Matters

The applicant’s age may be important. If the impairment is significant, the individual’s age, if under 50 to 55, will not deter granting of benefits. Alternately, if one’s impairment is considered to be less severe, being under 50 may have a negative impact. Someone who is older may be considered eligible for SSD benefits despite a less than severe impairment. An attorney may help add documentation of the way in which age does not affect disability upon appeal.

Education May Affect Eligibility

The higher an applicant’s educational level, the greater the likelihood he or she may be denied benefits on the initial application. The reasoning here is that a more educated individual may have an easier time finding work in a sedentary job. An attorney may help document that even sedentary work may be impossible when an appeal is filed.

Previous Work Experience May Matter

If an applicant’s previous work experience is substantial, it is possible the SSA will consider that he or she can get work despite an impairment, particularly if the impairment would not incapacitate the individual. If the past work was more skilled, this increases the chance the applicant might be denied. An attorney might help provide details substantiating that the applicant is unable to procure work of any kind. Consult a Lakeland Social Security Lawyer When an individual is denied Social Security benefits, he or she may decide to file an appeal. In this case, the claimant must prove that the initial decision made by the SSA was wrong. A Lakeland Social Security lawyer may help with the appeal process. Call Kaylor, Kaylor, and Leto, PA at 863-968-7837 today.