Being unable to work due to a disability, injury or illness can be one of the most stressful experiences in life. Social Security Disability Insurance — SSDI — and Supplemental Security Income — SSI — can be invaluable lifelines when one is unable to work. Unfortunately, most claims are denied at the initial stage. New Jersey applicants do not have to give up on the process because of an initial denial, though. Filing an appeal can help individuals get the benefits they need.

Why does the SSA deny claims?

The Social Security Administration denies claims when it feels that the applicant does not meet the criteria for benefits. For example, the SSA might deny an application if it believes that a claimant did not properly adhere to a prescribed medical treatment. The SSA might also deny a claim if it believes the claimant’s disability:

  • Will not last for at least 12 months
  • Does not prevent him or her from working
  • Was caused by alcohol or drug misuse

Providing new evidence

Providing new evidence that rebuts the SSA’s initial findings is often key when filing a request for reconsideration. This requires more than just a small statement from a doctor about the nature of one’s condition and limited ability to work. Instead, thorough doctor’s report that contains some of the following information and supporting documentation is preferred:

  • Medical diagnosis
  • Clinical findings
  • Laboratory findings
  • Medical history
  • Prescribed treatment, response and prognosis

An initial denied claim is no reason to give up on SSDI benefits. Filing an appeal is a great next step that can help New Jersey residents who are unable to work secure the help they need. Additional documentation will help round out and support an argument for an appeal, so gathering that should be a priority prior to submitting the documentation.