Why should I appeal my Social Security disability case rather than reapply?

If your Social Security disability benefits have been denied, you have three options: you can accept the decision and continue working, you can appeal the decision, or you can fill out a new benefits application. There are risks and benefits with each of these options, and choosing the wrong path could mean losing your right to benefits.

  • What if you appeal? Appealing can be a long process, but it is often worth it. The main reason to appeal is that if the Social Security Administration grants your disability benefits, your payments may be granted retroactively—back to your original onset date. For example, if you apply for benefits on June 1, 2014 and say that you are disable since June 1, 2013 and are denied, but appeal the decision and are granted benefits by a judge on June 1, 2015, you are entitled to  of back pay,subject any statutory waiting period plus your regular monthly benefits.
  • What if you reapply? While you may be able to win your benefits if you reapply, you will not be able to claim back payments to the date of your original application. In addition, unless your condition has changed significantly from your first attempt, your application will likely be denied again.
  • What if you do nothing? The obvious answer is that you will not receive benefits. And if you do not appeal the decision, instead waiting until your disability worsens to submit a new application, you will not receive any back pay from the Social Security Administration for the years prior to your approval.

Appealing a Social Security Disability Decision May Save You Time and Money

In most cases, it is wiser to appeal your benefit denial than reapply—and you should do so as quickly as possible. If you are having trouble with the appeals process, send us an email at [email protected] or click the link on this page to read our free informational guide, Why You Should Hire an Attorney to Handle Your Social Security Disability Claim.

 

Sean D. Cuddigan
SSA and VA Disability Attorney in Omaha, Nebraska