The Social Security Administration (SSA) denies over half of the applications for disability benefits it receives every year. The denials can be classified as either medical or technical denials, depending on the reason the SSA decided not to grant the applicant benefits.
What is a Medical Denial?
The SSA carefully reviews each application to determine if the applicant qualifies for disability benefits. The main requirement is that the applicant has a condition that is disabling. The SSA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that prevents someone from working. The impairment must also either result in death or last for at least 12 consecutive months or the SSA does not consider it disabling.
If an applicant fails to prove that he has a disability that makes him qualified for benefits, the SSA will issue a medical denial of the application. Basically, this means the request for disability benefits was denied because the applicant did not meet basic medical requirements.
What is a Technical Denial?
A technical denial is not related to the applicant’s medical history. Applicants that have been issued a technical denial are not qualified to receive disability benefits for non-medical reasons.
For example, applicants will not qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits unless they have earned enough work credits. The number of credits you need to qualify will depend on your age. If you are 50 years old, for instance, you will need 28 work credits to qualify for benefits. If you do not have 28 credits when you apply for benefits, the SSA will issue a technical denial since you are ineligible due to non-medical reasons.
A technical denial can also be issued if the applicant is making too much money to qualify for disability benefits. In 2018, the income limit is $1,180 per month. This means if you are earning more than $1,180 per month, your claim will be denied.
Can Technical Denials Be Appealed?
An appeal will not change the fact that an applicant does not meet the eligibility requirements. Therefore, it is not logical to appeal a technical denial in most cases. However, the SSA can make mistakes. If the SSA denied your claim due to an error in calculating work credits or income, it’s important to appeal this decision as soon as possible.
If you are unable to work because of a disability, let our attorneys help. The experienced Social Security attorneys at Armstrong & Vaught, P.L.C. guide clients through every step of the application and appeal process to ensure they are awarded the benefits they deserve. Call us now at 918-582-2500, toll free at (800) 722-8880, or contact us online for a free consultation with a skilled attorney.