If you were to survey individuals who have pursued Social Security Disability claims, most would tell you that waiting for a decision is the hardest part of the journey. As time goes on, that wait gets longer. If your case reaches the Appeals Council, you’ve been waiting for a long time, and there is a good chance that your case will be denied again.
So, what are you to do? Many people simply give up at this stage, but there are options. You may still appeal to the Federal District Court.
To appeal to the Federal District Court, you must file your appeal within 60 days of the Appeals Council decision. If you fail to appeal within the 60-day time period, you will have to start the process over again from the beginning.
If you file your appeal in a timely manner, then you will pursue your case with the Federal District Court. The most important thing to know at this point is that the process becomes even more complicated then it was before. The intensity level picks up, and there is even more paperwork. If you haven’t hired an attorney to represent you before, this would be an excellent time to seek one’s assistance. It’s important to note that it may be difficult to find an attorney who will step in this late in the process.
Further proof that you’re in the major leagues is evident when you realize that the Federal District Court does not allow any additional documents or evidence to be submitted. Essentially you (or more accurately, your lawyer) have to prove that the SSA was wrong in their findings based on what the Administrative Law Judge had to review at the time of your hearing.
Once everything is submitted and the arguments have been made, it’s time for the Federal District Court to make their decision. Or is it? The Federal District Court may actually decide to do one of three things:
- Decide to uphold the decision made by the Social Security Disability Appeals Council.
- Decide to remand your case for additional review by the Social Security Administration.
- Decide to grant you your Social Security Disability benefits.
One of the best things you can do before your case reaches this level is hire a qualified Social Security Attorney. Since 1994, our firm has helped thousands of people get the benefits they deserve. If you’d like to know more about the services we provide, call us today for a free consultation. Our toll-free number is 1-877-Jan Dils. (1-877-526-3457.) If you can’t talk now, fill out this form and a member of our team can call you at a better time. If you would like to learn even more about the Social Security Disability Process, request a free copy of our book here.