Social Security Often Makes Errors When Reviewing A Disability Case

Since only 25 to 30 percent of applications for Social Security disability benefits are approved at the first level a successful claim is usually the result of undergoing at least one judicial and appellate review in Chicago, often multiple appeals are necessary. Although it is true that some applicants are successful after a single hearing in the presence of an administrative law judge, many are once again denied. If your hearing result is unfavorable or only partially favorable you are granted a further 60 days to elevate your appeal to the Appeals Council. For those unfamiliar with the claims process a partially favorable decision is one which grants benefits but they do not include retroactive payments which is the case when the application is favorable.

The process of a judicial and appellate review in Chicago is not perfect, the administration do make mistakes. If your hearing with an administrative law judge was unfavorable before you proceed to the Appeals Council you must carefully review the details of the law judge’s decision, looking for errors in fact and in law, this of course is why an attorney is so important at this time. If it is possible to develop a persuasive argument, showing why the judge made a decision which cannot be supported by evidence then you stand a good chance of having your case remanded or sent back by the Appeals Council to the judge with instructions to carry out a new hearing. The Appeals Council reserve the right to overturn the decision of the administrative law judge and award benefits but this rarely happens. A decision by the Appeals Council that goes in your favor normally involves returning your case, along with special instructions, to the judge.

Although the remand rate is only about 20 percent it is high enough to indicate that it is possible to a judicial and appellate review in Chicago, but the facts and the law have to favor you, the applicant. When your lawyer elevates your case to the Appeals Council, directing the attention of the council to errors made by the administrative law judge can increase your chances of getting your application returned for a further hearing.

There are a number of errors that can be made by the judge; they include giving insufficient weight to the testimony of your doctor, important information was omitted during your discussion with the judge or perhaps the vocational expert did not base his or her testimony on the correct residual functional capacity statement which noted that you have significant work related limitations.


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