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If Social Security tries to cut off my disability Social Security benefits, what can I do?

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Learn about appealing your disability Social Security claim closure, about your special reconsideration rights, and about how a lawyer can help.

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Continuing Disability Reviews

When your claim is approved for disability Social Security, the approval decision may include a determination of when Social Security believes your health is likely to improve to the point that you will no longer be disabled. If that is the case, your approval letter will tell you that your claim will undergo a medical review at a certain point in time, typically in one year, three years, or seven years from the date your claim was approved. Whether you will be subject to a scheduled review and when that review will occur depends on your disabling condition, its severity, and your prognosis for recovery.

If Social Security reviews your claim because of a scheduled review date or for any other reason, you will be asked to provide updated information about your health, medical treatment, daily activities, and any work you have done. This information will be sent to the Disability Determination Services for review, to see if you are still medically disabled.

How to Appeal If Your Disability Social Security Payments Are Cut Off

If Social Security determines that you are no longer disabled and terminates your benefits, you then have the right to appeal. You can get the appeal forms by calling Social Security’s national toll-free number (800) 772-1213 or by visiting your local Social Security office. The appeal must be received by the Social Security Administration within sixty-five days of the date on the notice of termination. If Social Security does not receive your appeal within the sixty-five days, it is likely that you will lose your right to appeal. If you appeal within ten days and request payment termination, you can request that your benefits continue while the appeal is decided.

For your appeal, you will need to explain specifically why Social Security’s decision to terminate your benefits is incorrect. At this point, it is often important to have a lawyer who is experienced in Social Security Disability. He or she can review your claim file, analyze Social Security’s reasons for the closure, and help you formulate an argument for continuation of your benefits.

Special Appeal Rules for Disability Terminations

Unlike appealing a new claim denial, when your benefits are to be terminated due to a determination that you are not medically disabled, you can skip the reconsideration appeal and request a disability hearing before an administrative law judge.

For your appeal, you will need to explain specifically why Social Security’s decision to terminate your benefits is incorrect. At this point, it is often important to have a lawyer who is experienced in Social Security Disability. He or she can review your claim file, analyze Social Security’s reasons for the closure, and help you formulate an argument for continuation of your benefits.

Additional Appeals

If your reconsideration is denied, you can appeal a second time with a request for a hearing before a Social Security administrative law judge. If you opted for a hearing instead of a reconsideration, than you can request a review by the Social Security Appeals Council. If the Appeals Council denies your claim, you can file suit in Federal court. For additional information about Social Security Disability appeals, please see our article “I Was Denied Social Security Disability. What Can I Do?” which is applicable to appealing the termination of your disability Social Security benefits.

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2 Comments

  1. Darrel says:

    I have been on disability for 2 years or so- I got a letter that they are cutting me off- this due to the fact my cancer is not spreading- however the side effects of the radiation just wont go away and have kept me homebound- do I NEED to hire a lawyer for the appeals- so far they tell me it will cost thousands for them to represent me and I really cant afford it.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Darrel,

      Attorneys specializing in Social Security Disability typically take cases on a contingency basis and receive payment for their services only if they are successful in getting you. The amount they can charge is set by Social Security law–25% of back pay up to a maximum of $6,000. I suggest that you call Disability Advisor at 1-888-393-1010 to discuss your situation with one of their attorneys.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

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