By Marie Lowery, Attorney

Initial Level

When the Social Security Administration receives an initial application, it is first reviewed to see whether the applicant has worked enough to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits or meets the requirements for Supplemental Security Income. If the necessary criteria are met, the application is sent to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) department for review.

The DDS office reviews the information and medical records provided with the application. If the examiner reviewing your case does not have enough medical documentation to make a determination, you may be referred for a consultative exam.

You will receive a decision in writing within 3 to 6 months after filing your initial application.

Reconsideration Level

If your initial application is denied, a request for reconsideration must be filed within 60 days of the initial denial notice.

At reconsideration, applications are reviewed by a different DDS examiner. During the reconsideration process you will want to provide updated information regarding visits to your doctor or any new treatments that you have undergone.

You will receive a decision in writing within 3 to 5 months after requesting reconsideration.

Hearing Level

If your Social Security Disability claim is denied at the initial and reconsideration levels, you must file a request for a hearing within 60 days of the reconsideration denial.

Currently, the wait time for a hearing at the Charleston office is 11 months from the date your request for hearing was filed. When your hearing is scheduled, you will receive notice of the hearing at least twenty days prior to the scheduled date.

Your chances of success are greatly increased with proper representation by an attorney knowledgeable about Social Security Disability claims at all levels of the application process.

Recent Blog Post
Can Passengers of Drunk Drivers Get Compensation in Crashes?

Sustaining injuries in a car accident is a frightening experience regardless of whether you are the driver or the passenger. According to the CDC, someone dies in a drunk driving accident every 50 minutes in the U.S. Impaired driving accounts…

What is “Dooring” When Talking About Bicycle Crashes?

Bicyclists face potentially dangerous situations when sharing the road with motor vehicles. One of these situations is dooring, where a driver or passenger opens a car door into the path of another road user, such as a bicyclist, without checking…

How Long Does It Take to Settle a Motorcycle Lawsuit?

You have the right to file a lawsuit after a motorcycle accident. The length of time to settle a motorcycle lawsuit and receive damages depends on several factors. The evidence, facts of your case, and the cooperation of the at-fault…

How Much Can I Get for Pain and Suffering in South Carolina?

When someone is injured through no fault of their own, they can get compensation in a personal injury lawsuit, and the purpose of that compensation is to get the victim as close as possible back to how they were before…

Awards & Recognition
Best Law Firm 2022
Million Dollar Advocates Forum
B Member
Martindale-Hubbell
Best Lawyers 2021 Small
BBB
ASJ Leaders Forum
National Trial Lawyers Top 100
Google Review
Avvo Rating
Media
CBS News
Fox
NBC
ABC