Good Cause for Filing Social Security Disability Appeal Late

If your Social Security disability claim is denied, it’s extremely important to meet all the deadlines for filing an appeal. If for some reason you don’t, the Social Security Administration may nonetheless allow you to file past the deadline if it finds that you had “good cause” for the delay. Good cause exists if you had a valid physical, mental, educational, or linguistic limitation that kept you from filing a timely appeal or from understanding or knowing about the requirement to file a timely appeal. Good cause may also exist if any action by the Social Security Administration itself led you to believe that you had more time to file.

Additional grounds for good cause exist when a claimant had a mental incapacity preventing him or her from understanding the review procedures and had no one legally responsible for pursuing the claim, such as a parent, guardian, attorney, or other legal representative. This is true regardless of how much time has passed since the ruling that is being appealed. The Social Security Administration should resolve any reasonable doubt about the existence of good cause in the claimant’s favor.

Because the disability appeal procedure is so complex, you may be best served by getting the help of an experienced Tennessee disability lawyer.

To obtain permission to file a late appeal, you must include with your appeal a detailed letter explaining why your appeal is late. You may need to file an affidavit under oath setting forth the relevant facts.

The judge with the authority to hear the pertinent appeal determines whether or not good cause for filing late exists. Therefore, if your Request for Hearing is late, an administrative law judge will determine whether you had good cause. If your Request for Review of Hearing Decision or federal court appeal is late, the Appeals Council will determine whether you had good cause.

If you’ve been denied Social Security disability benefits, you should get the help of a qualified Tennessee disability lawyer who can help you with your appeal. Simply fill out the form on this page to schedule a free initial consultation.