Your Well-Being Is Our Priority

How likely is success during an SSDI benefits appeal?

On Behalf of | Jun 4, 2024 | SSD Denied Claims/Appeals

People who have been responsible employees for years can suddenly become unable to continue working. Injuries, illnesses and progressive medical conditions could render people incapable of maintaining gainful employment. Not everyone has private disability insurance, but many working adults could qualify for disability benefits.

Those who have worked previously have made contributions to Social Security that may benefit them now that they have medical challenges to address. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits can provide a baseline level of income for those unable to work due to medical challenges. SSDI benefits can continue until someone reaches retirement age and qualifies for Social Security retirement benefits.

Many people who hope to qualify for SSDI benefits get denied initially. They then have to appeal if they hope to obtain benefits. How likely is someone to get benefits when appealing an unfavorable initial decision?

Quite a few applicants secure benefits after appealing

People rely on SSDI benefits when they are at their most vulnerable. The people funding the program deserve to understand how it operates. The Social Security Administration (SSA) reports success rates and other details about claims to ensure organizational transparency.

When looking at the most recent decade of claims, it is easy to see that appeals are a valuable option. An average of 21% of the applicants seeking SSDI benefits each year received approval when they initially applied. However, the overall approval rate of was an average of 31% between 2010 and 2019.

Approximately a third of the people who obtained SSDI benefits obtained approval through the appeals process. The first stage of reconsideration or an internal review of someone’s application was successful for 2% of SSDI applicants. Approximately 8% of applicants eventually received benefits after attending a hearing in front of an administrative law judge.

Appealing potentially leads to approval for someone previously denied benefits. It may also result in the SSA paying back-dated benefits that cover the months between when someone qualified for benefits after applying and when they finally received approval. With this said, the process is rarely easy. Handling an SSDI application or appeal without support may reduce someone’s chances of success. Especially in cases involving unusual or particularly aggressive medical issues, applicants may want to work with a professional.