SSI Federal Court Appeal

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How to Appeal a Disability Decision in Federal Court

Appealing a Social Security decision can be complex.  It can require you to collect paperwork and records, jump through multiple stages of administrative processes, and can result in a full blown court trial if the initial appeal is denied.  However, once the administrative processes have been completed, there is still another step that can occur.  Social Security applicants have the option to request a review of their case by filing an appeal with the federal court system.

Depending on where you live in Pennsylvania, your Social Security disability federal court appeal may be heard in one of the state’s three federal district courts:

  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, which includes Philadelphia 
  • United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, which includes Harrisburg and Scranton
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, which includes Pittsburgh

Each court has its own procedures for accepting and handling Social Security disability appeals. Furthermore, there may be different procedures in place depending on the type of benefits you are requesting. For example, a rare SSI federal court appeal may differ from an appeal for other benefits, such as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). 

If you are a resident of PA and are unsure which district your case falls into, or if you have any other questions, contact a local Social Security disability lawyer. He or she will be able to help you understand the process and guide you through it step-by-step.

For your disability benefits case to be eligible for the federal court process, you must first complete the following steps: 

  • Submit an initial application for benefits. 
  • If this application is denied, you may appeal the decision by requesting a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) within 60 days of receiving your denial (based on the date on your denial notice). 
  • If the ALJ affirms the initial decision, you may ask the Social Security Appeals Council to review your case within 60 days of the notice of the ALJ decision. The Appeals Council may then review the decision, or decline to review your case. 
  • If the Appeals Council affirms the denial or refuses to review your case, you may file a civil action in federal court within 60 days of receiving notice of the Council’s action.

The process of appealing a Social Security disability decision in federal court can be daunting, but with the help of an experienced Social Security lawyer, it can be easier.  He or she  will be able to help you collect the necessary paperwork and records, and walk you through each step of the administrative and judicial processes. If you are considering appealing a Social Security lawyer.

If you have any questions about Social Security disability or the appeal process, please contact us today for a free consultation. We would be happy to answer any of your questions and help you understand your legal options.

(866) 691-5299