Life tends to present us challenges. In most cases, we can overcome them. However, some challenges require assistance to overcome them. Take, for example, disabilities. While some individuals living with a disability can lead a normal life, others are not only unable to care for themselves but also cannot work because of a disability. In these matters, applying for Social Security disability might be a necessary step to take.

The main concern applicants have when they apply for SSD benefits is being denied. It is well known that there is a long wait to appeal a denied decision. Therefore, many applicants are apprehensive about even entering this process. Nonetheless, the appeals process can be a very valuable step to take, as it often results in individuals obtaining the benefits that they seek.

Anyone denied SSD benefits has the right to appeal this decision. In addition to the right to appeal a denial, applicants and recipients also have the right to an appeal if they are determined by the SSA to no longer meet the requirements for SSD or it is found that the recipient was overpaid. In order to initiate the appeals process, one must first seek reconsideration. This allows for a new decision to be made by a person that took no part in the initial decision.

If an unfavorable decision is made after reconsideration, an applicant is able to seek a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. If this decision is unfavorable, an applicant is then able to file a request for review with the appeals council.

There are various levels of the appeal process. Therefore, it is important for applicants to understand what these levels are and what occurs at each level. Additionally, this information can provide an applicant with an idea of how long they will be in this process and how best to ensure that they can obtain SSD benefits.