What Is a Social Security Disability Request for Reconsideration or Paper Review?

If your Social Security disability claim is denied, you will receive a letter from the Social Security Administration outlining why your claim was denied and what to do if you would like to appeal the decision. The very first step in the appeals process is to submit a Request for Reconsideration, also known as a paper review or review of initial determination.

What Is a Request for Reconsideration?

The Request for Reconsideration is the initial step of the appeals process for your denied Social Security disability claim. A request for reconsideration simply means that you are asking the Social Security Administration to take a second look at your application. During this reconsideration, your local Social Security field office will have a new medical consultant and a new reviewer read your application as well as any other extra documents you send in for clarification. You do not have to show up to any event in person to request reconsideration.

How Do I File a Request for Reconsideration?

Here’s how you file a Request for Reconsideration:

  • Respond to your initial claim denial within 60 days of receiving the letter.
  • Submit a Reconsideration Disability Report form.
  • Submit a Request for Reconsideration.
  • Submit an Authorization to Disclose Information to the Social Security Administration form.
  • Submit any medical records that back up your case, including any new medical information or tests that have taken place since your application.
  • Submit any information that argues against the listed reason for your denial.

Be sure to read your denial letter and address all areas of concern in your appeal.

What If My Request for Reconsideration Is Denied?

Only about five to fifteen percent of Requests for Reconsideration are approved, but your chances of getting your claim decision reversed at the next level of appeal are much higher. Still, going through the process of filing a Request for Reconsideration is a necessary step, and the faster you take the step, the faster you will get your ultimate decision.

After your request is denied, the next step is requesting an administrative law judge (ALJ) hearing, where about two out of three appeals are granted. This hearing either takes place in person or on video and it involves explaining your case to a judge.

How Can I Get Help With a Request for Reconsideration?

The appeals process for your Social Security disability claim can be confusing, especially if you are not familiar with the process or if you don’t fully understand why your claim was denied. At Morgan & Weisbrod, we are committed to helping our clients appeal their cases and get the disability benefits they need and deserve. Contact us today to request a free case evaluation.

Carl M. Weisbrod
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Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law