Federal Court Appeals
If you were denied your Social Security disability benefits after a hearing before a judge, you can appeal that decision. Like all appeals, there important steps to take and time limits to observe.
- First, you have to request “Appeals Council Review” within 60 days of the day you received the judge’s decision in the mail. (Use SSA Form HA-520 and send it to the Appeals Council address on your copy of the judge’s decision denying your claim.)
- Second, you have to wait for the Appeals Council to complete their review. (Most requests for review are denied.)
- Third, within 60 days of receiving the Appeals Council denial, you must file a complaint suing the Commissioner of Social Security in the U.S. District Court (in the appropriate district).
Filing the complaint is the easy part. Once the complaint is filed and served on the opposing party (the Commissioner), then an answer is filed by the Office of General Council, and a transcript of the entire proceeding before the judge at your hearing is compiled and forwarded to the parties. After that date, you have 60 days to draft an Opening Brief describing what legal errors the judge made. Your arguments have to include recitations to the record, and arguments based on the statute, rules, and case precedent. (This is the part where it is really helpful to have an attorney.)
If you would like me to review your claim, then contact me below. Remember your time limits!
Have Me Review Your Denied Claim for Federal Appeal
What I need to review your denied claim after hearing is:
- A copy of the judge’s decision denying your claim. (Don’t send me your only copy. I am not sending it back to you.)
- A copy of the entire record that was before the judge. (You can get this from the Social Security office where you had your hearing or from your past attorney.)
- A copy of your Appeals Council denial letter (if you’ve received it).
Send this all to me and include a stamped return envelope with your address if you want it returned. Send this within 60 days of receiving your Appeals Council Denial of Review letter. Allow me at least 14 days to review your claim, and I will let you know if I am willing to take your federal appeal.