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SSI applicant and a denial for failure to respond to the SSA

A SSI applicant may find it difficult to navigate the complex Social Security Disability application process on their own. If they are very sick or severely disabled it becomes even more difficult for them. Recently on our disability forum we had a user ask, “Can the Social Security Administration (SSA) deny my claim due to my lack of response and will I have another chance to win Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits after a denial?”


SSI applicant and Supplemental Security Income denials


There are many requirements for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Not only do you have to be able to prove you are disabled, blind or aged (65 years of age or older) and you lack the ability to work, you must also prove you have very limited income and resources.

But what if a SSI applicant meets those criteria but fails to respond to repeated requests from the SSA for more information, completed forms, or return phone calls? What if the SSA requests that the SSI applicant go to see a consultative examiner but they fail to do so? If a SSI applicant fails to respond to the SSA they will eventually close their case and send them a denial.

Consider, there are over 3 million disability applications filed each year. The SSA does not have time to track down each SSI applicant and make repeated requests for information. Do yourself a favor, if you don’t have time to respond to the requests of the SSA hire a disability lawyer who can do some of the work for you.

What are the options for an SSI applicant if they have been denied?


An SSI applicant who was almost done with the SSI application process who has been denied for failure to respond may have 60 days from the date of the SSI denial letter to file an appeal, but if they have not completed the SSI application and forms they may need to start from the beginning and reapply.

Review information about submitting an SSI application on the SSA website www.ssa.gov. SSI applications cannot be done totally online so you will have to talk to the SSA. Make sure you understand the requirements for income and resource limitations. If you make too much money or you are working too much when you apply for SSI benefits you will be automatically denied.

What if the SSA tells a SSI applicant to see a consultative examiner?


If the SSA tells a SSI applicant to see a consultative examiner this is because they do not have sufficient medical information from their medical records to determine if they are disabled. Failure to go to the consultative examiner when asked will lead to a disability denial.

Bottom line


If the SSA asks you for more information, send it to them. If they call you, call them back. But the best way to ensure a SSI applicant will get benefits as soon as possible is to complete the SSI application the right way before submitting it to the SSA.
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