How Many Stages of SSD Are There?
The Social Security Disability application process can have many stages.
Very rarely will a person receive an approval on the first try unless that person has a terminal condition. The first stage of the process is the initial determination. It could take the SSA four to six months to give a first ruling.
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If the claimant receives a denial, then he or she will need to need to request a reconsideration either alone or with the assistance of an attorney. The individual has 60 days to request a reconsideration after a case is denied the first time. If the reconsideration is the denied, then the claimant will have to file an appeal.
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An administrative law judge will hear the first appeal. If that appeal is denied, then the claimant can go to the fourth stage, which is an appeal in front of the Appeals Council. After the Appeals Council denies an SSD case, the person will have to request a hearing in front of a federal judge. Technically, there can be five stages of application for SSD benefits.
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The entire process of applying for such benefits can take several years because of the number of applications that are on backlog.