I’ve Missed My Appeal Deadline…Now What?
One of the most important pieces of your Social Security claim is making sure you appeal denials on time. Most denials give you a sixty-day window (plus an additional five days for mailing) to appeal any decision other than “Fully Favorable.” With such a tight turnaround, it is important that you note the denial date: not the date you received it, but the date that is actually typed on the letter.
I have had several unfortunate instances where potential clients call me a day or two after their denial period closed. My advice to them is to appeal the denial, and at the same time, file a SSA-795: Statement of Claimant or Other Person. On the Form SSA-795, you should explain to the Social Security Administration the reason for your late appeal.
Some reasons that the SSA may accept a late appeal include:
- Illness: If you were ill at the time you received your denial notice, and if the illness prevented you from submitting an appeal in time, the SSA may accept your appeal, even if it is late.
- Destroyed records: If important records regarding your social security case were destroyed in a fire or some other accident, you may submit your appeal after the deadline.
- Mental or physical limitations: Some applicants may face mental and/or physical limitations that make it challenging to submit an appeal within the required time frame. The SSA should consider how these limitations prevented you from submitting a timely appeal.
- Death within your immediate family: A death within your immediate family may prevent you from submitting a timely appeal due to the challenges you were going through during that period.
- Incorrect information from the SSA: If you did not receive the correct information from the SSA (such as the right process to follow when filing an appeal), you may be permitted to submit your appeal after the deadline.
- You did not receive the notice in time: Sometimes notices from the SSA do not arrive in time, or do not arrive at all. Unfortunately, mistakes do occur and it is important to save envelopes for postmark proof, or even make a note on the envelope as to the date you received the notice.
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