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Reasons applications for Social Security Disability are denied

Your physical ailments and/or psychological condition cause nearly unbearable pain, and difficulty maintaining focus and concentration resulting in your inability to work. There are bad days and very bad days. You simply cannot effectively perform your job anymore, and now the worries have started to mount. How will you pay your bills? How will you support your family?

You really have no choice other than to pursue Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. But you must understand that the journey to obtain them is time-consuming and wrought with rejection. The Social Security Administration (SSA) denies nearly two-thirds of all first-time applications for disability benefits. Do not let this dishearten you; your next step is to appeal the government’s decision, and many appeals are approved.

Most common reasons for denied applications

But why are so many SSD benefits denied? Let us review some statistics provided by the SSA.

In 2017, nearly 513,000 people had their applications for SSD denied, according to the 2018 Annual Statistical Report for the Social Security Disability program. Here are the three main reasons why:

  • The person was able to perform other types of work (40.6%)
  • The medical impairment was not severe enough (23.8%)
  • The person was able to perform their usual past work (9.9%)

Additional reasons for SSDI denials include:

  • The impairment did not or is not expected to last for a year
  • The impairment resulted from drug addiction or alcoholism
  • There was insufficient medical evidence provided
  • Failure to cooperate
  • Failure to follow prescribed treatment
  • Choosing not to continue with the claim
  • Returned to substantial work before a disability could be established

An initial rejection for SSD benefits is likely, but not all is lost. Your chances of obtaining social security disability benefits are strong upon an appeal. The Social Security Administration also pays disability benefits to disabled children under the right circumstances. Working with a skilled attorney who understands SSD claims is essential.

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