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Why were my SSDI benefits denied?

by | May 13, 2019 | Firm News

Every year, the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies nearly 50% of disability claims. Many New York families who face the challenges of a disability then have to manage the stress of a denied claim as well. And almost all of these families wonder the same thing: why was their claim denied?

The SSA should provide you with a letter explaining the reason for the denial, but here are some of the common reasons the SSA denies claims.

1. Insufficient medical proof

Both your official medical records and your statements about your symptoms play significant roles in your Social Security Disability (SSDI) claim. These statements prove your disability to the SSA. 

That may sound tedious, but it is one of the fundamental matters in your initial claim. And the lack of proof is one of the most common reasons that the SSA denies disability claims. 

In your statements to the SSA, you must prove that you meet their definition of a disability. This includes demonstrating:

  • How your disability prevents you from working
  • How the symptoms of your disability impact your daily life
  • The disability is severe and long-term

The last point of proof is also a reason the SSA could deny your claim. 

2. The disability is temporary

The SSA defines long-term disabilities as lasting from 12 months to the end of someone’s life. And the SSA must believe that your disability will have an extensive and severe impact on your life.

For example, a traumatic brain injury (TBI) often has lasting symptoms and could severely impact someone’s physical and cognitive abilities. Head trauma and brain injuries often qualify as a long-term disability.

3. Too much income

The SSA does not always deny SSDI claims for medical reasons. They could also deny your claim if you earn too much income.

Little or no income is one of the factors that prove how your disability impacts your ability to work. However, if you earn more than $1,170 each month, it is likely that the SSA will deny your claim.

Earning over $1,000 generally means you can complete a substantial gainful activity. And the SSA takes any substantial gainful activity to mean that your disability does not have a significant impact on your life.

Do not lose hope

Regardless of why the SSA denied your claim, you always have the option to appeal their decision. Many claims are denied at first and approved the second time around.

There is no doubt that you and your family deserve benefits. And a denial does not have to stop you from recovering them.