Why Your Social Security Disability Claim May Have Been DeniedWhy Your Social Security Disability Claim May Have Been Denied

After completing and putting together what you considered to be the BEST application for disability benefits, you receive a letter in the mail stating that you were denied Social Security disability benefits. Like many other applicants, you are left wondering how the Social Security Administration (SSA) denied your Social Security disability claim after you provided them with ample evidence of your disability.

The SSA uses a five-step process to decide whether an individual is disabled. Under SSA guidelines, “Disability” is defined and based on an individual’s inability to work. Step One of the process is learning whether or not you are working. If you’re working and your earnings average more than $1,000 a month, you generally will not be considered disabled. If you are not working or your monthly earnings average the current amount or less, the SSA then looks at Step Two, your medical condition.

To be decided “disabled” your medical condition must significantly limit your ability to do basic work activities such as walking, sitting and remembering. If your condition is considered to not be severe, you will not be considered disabled. If your condition is considered severe the SSA will proceed to Step Three, to see if your condition is on the “List of Impairments”. If listed, you are automatically defined as disabled and approved for benefits. If not, the SSA will compare your condition with one from the list. If it is found not to be as severe, the SSA moves on to Step Four to determine if you can do the work that you did before.

To determine whether you can do the work that you did before, the SSA reviews the work that you've done in the last 15 years that involved significant and productive physical or mental activities. They compare how you did the work and how the work is generally done across the U.S. against your current capacity to work. If they determine that you can do the work as you did before or as it is done nationally, you will not be approved. If they determine you cannot do the work, they move to Step Five to see if you would be able to participate in another type of job.

To determine if you are able to do another job, the SSA evaluates your medical condition, age, education, past work experience and any skills you may have that could be used to do other work. If you are unable to do other work based on these factors, you will be considered disabled.

Be the deciding factor in your case! Any evidence that you have to prove your disability is vital to the success of your claim. The more information that you provide to the SSA to prove your claim, the more likely you will have a successful case.

For more information about Social Security benefits or to receive assistance in filing a claim, even if you have already been denied Social Security disability benefits, fill out the form on this page for a FREE Social Security disability case evaluation. The Cochran Firm Disability Lawyers offers experienced Social Security disability lawyers.


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