April 29th

Here are your steps to filing with the Social Security Administration:

File a claim

Before contacting the Social Security Administration, it is important to determine your eligibility, evaluate if you have a valid claim and decide what type of claim you should file.

Ask for help completing the application forms correctly and in the most effective manner.

Once your application is submitted, it is critical to provide evidence confirming your mental and/or physical disability. Ask for a Medical Records Specialists, an expert in obtaining your medical records, to support your claim.

File an appeal

If your claim is denied, you have a right to file an appeal. There are four appeal levels:


Reconsideration is a complete review of your claim by someone who did not take part in the first decision. All the evidence considered in the application and any new evidence submitted will be evaluated.


A hearing is the second appeal and will be conducted by an administrative law judge who had no part in the first decision or the reconsideration of your case. You will have an opportunity to appear and present your case. At the hearing the judge will question you and any witnesses you bring to the hearing. The judge often schedules a medical expert and/or vocational expert to appear. Your attorney should be prepared to question expert witnesses and make certain facts presented are favorable to you.

Appeals Council

If you disagree with the hearing decision, you may ask for a review by the Appeals Council. The Appeals Council will review the judge’s decision. If the Appeals Council believes the judge’s decision is correct, it will decline to review it. If a review is conducted, the Appeals Council will either reverse the judge’s decision and issue a favorable decision or send the case back to the judge for further consideration.

Federal Lawsuit

If you disagree with the Appeals Council’s decision, you may file a lawsuit in federal district court.

The most common mistake made is failure to appeal the case.

Jeff Davis

Attorney at Law