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What percentage of SSDI applicants are denied by the SSA?

On Behalf of | Dec 5, 2023 | Social Security Disability |

The Social Security Disability Insurance (“SSDI”) program provides Ohio residents with much-needed compensation after they become disabled and can no longer work. This program can be exactly what you need to stay financially stable and take care of yourself and your loved ones.

If you believe you qualify for SSDI benefits and submit your application, learning you have been denied is likely to be a crushing blow, as you wonder what your next steps or options are. You might also wonder if denials are common.

Recent statistics on denied SSDI claims

Sadly, statistics show a relatively high percentage of SSDI claims are denied by the Social Security Administration (“SSA”). According to the SSDI annual statistical report from 2020, an average of 67% of disability claims were denied between 2010-2019.

These statistics also reveal that a higher percentage of disability claims are awarded as part of the initial claim, with approvals ranging from 21% to 23%. Only between 2% and 8% of claims are approved on reconsideration or appeal after initially being denied.

These numbers show the importance of understanding if you qualify and how to properly submit your application for SSDI benefits to increase your chance of approval.

Why claims are denied

There are some common reasons why SSDI claims get denied. Some of these are simple mistakes that could have been prevented. Even if you ultimately get approved after a denial, the process is often lengthy and any additional delays only mean more time that you wait to get your benefits.

Lack of medical evidence of a disability is a common reason for denial. You must show that you have a legitimate disability and how this disability prevents you from working.

This is usually best proven through medical evidence, such as letters or statements from your doctors or medical providers. A detailed statement documenting your disability and clearly articulating how it prevents you from working can help you avoid a denial for lack of medical evidence.

Do not ignore SSA requests

Before denying your claim, the SSA might contact you and ask you to provide additional information or documentation. Ignoring these requests or not giving the correct information can lead to a claim denial.

Always cooperate with the SSA and comply with their requests. If you do not understand what they are asking you to do, ask them. Seek advice from a professional, such as an attorney who focuses on SSDI claims, if the SSA does not give you clear answers.

Failure to follow your doctor’s recommendations or treatment instructions is another reason your claim could be denied. You must be unable to work even though you are doing everything possible to treat your injury and faithfully following your treatment plan to qualify for SSDI.

Know your options after a denial

Prior denied applications could be a reason a new one is denied if there is nothing has changed about your situation. Many people are not aware that they can appeal a denied application and simply file a new one. The new one is not likely to be approved.

Finally, qualifying for benefits requires you to not be able to perform any work at all, or if you do work a certain job, to only earn a limited number of wages. Income that is over the required threshold could make you ineligible for SSDI benefits.