SSD Claim Appeals Reconsideration

Are you, or is someone you know, facing a denial of a Social Security disability claim? This situation can be disheartening, especially when someone knows they really can’t work due to a disability. However, you should know that denial is very common, and that there’s still hope!  For many, the “reconsideration” stage will be the next move in the claims process. Let’s break down what reconsideration is, how it works, and what you need to know. 

What is Reconsideration? 

Reconsideration is the first step in the appeals process after your initial Social Security disability claim is denied. It gives you another chance to present your case and to provide any additional evidence that supports your claim. 

The Reconsideration Process 

You can file a Request for Reconsideration online or by contacting your local Social Security office. If you’re concerned about making the same mistakes that you made in the initial filing (or new ones!), you may want to get help from a Disability Advocate. Once your Request for Reconsideration is submitted, your case will be reviewed by a different examiner who was not involved in the initial decision. They will reconsider all the evidence you provided, including any new information you’ve added this round.  

Time Window for Reconsideration 

After receiving your initial denial letter, you have 60 days (about 2 months) to file a Request for Reconsideration.  You should act as soon as possible, because if you miss this deadline, you will have to restart your application process.

After requesting reconsideration and filing your updated claim on time, it may take several months to receive a decision. Patience is key during this waiting period. During this time, it will help to review other resources related to your disability benefits journey. 

Reconsideration Success Rates 

While reconsideration offers another chance for approval, success rates at this stage can vary.  Remembering these facts can help you be positive but realistic: 

  • The success rate for reconsideration appeals is around 13% to 15%.
    This means that 13 to 15 out of every 100 applicants who request reconsideration are approved for disability benefits at this stage. 
  • Success rates can differ depending on a range of factors, including the strength of your case, the quality of evidence and information provided, and your individual circumstances. Hiring an attorney can increase your chance of success. 

Reconsideration State by State 

Different states may have different procedures for the reconsideration process. For example: 

  • California: In California, the local Disability Determination Service Division (operating under the California Department of Social Services) handles reconsideration requests. Applicants may need to follow specific guidelines outlined by the DDS, and there may be additional state-specific forms or documentation required. 
  • Texas: In Texas, reconsideration requests are processed by the Disability Determination Services Division of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The state usually takes around 1-3 months to process requests, and may require applicants to undergo additional medical evaluations or assessments. 
  • New York: In New York, reconsideration requests are reviewed by Disability Determination Services within the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. Applicants may need to adhere to state-specific guidelines and may have access to local resources or advocacy organizations for assistance. 

Learning the specific requirements and procedures in your state can lead to a successful reconsideration. A Disability advocate with expertise in the reconsideration phase can help you in a way that matches your situation and the state you live in.


Reconsideration is a vital first step in the Social Security disability appeals process. It offers an opportunity to present additional evidence and arguments to support your claim. While success rates can vary, understanding the process and seeking assistance when needed can improve your chances of a favorable outcome at this stage. 

For more detailed information on Social Security disability and the reconsideration process, refer to the Trajector Disability Guide. Or, reach out to a Trajector Disability advocate for assistance and guidance tailored to your situation. 

By understanding what reconsideration is and how it works, you can take proactive steps to pursue the benefits you deserve. Stay informed, stay hopeful, and do not give up on your quest for disability assistance.

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