Form SSA-561: What It Is, What It Is Meant For, And How To Use It

The government always has a form for every action you want to take. File your taxes and fill out Form 1040 or 1040 EZ. In the military and need a jeep? Then you need Requisition Form blah, blah, blah. Even when you apply for Social Security Disability Benefits, you need a form. When you are denied benefits, you need a Social Security Disability attorney's services. Then you need Form SSA-561. If you do not know about Form SSA-561, the following will bring you up to speed.

Request for Reconsideration

A denial of your initial application without the assistance of a lawyer is almost always how this goes. The lawyer can argue for you and your case such that SSA takes your application seriously. Without a lawyer, your application almost always lands on the rejection pile.

Then you need to file a "request for reconsideration." If you have finally decided to also hire a lawyer, then your lawyer will file the form; specifically Form SSA-561, requesting a reconsideration for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration. The form forces SSA to take a second look at your case. When your lawyer files the form, he/she includes any and all documentation you may have failed to file with the application the first time around. Providing SSA with extra and brand-new documentation encourages them to read everything and reconsider.

Form SSA-561 Is NOT the Appeals Form

Another mistake people make is assuming that Form SSA-561 is the "appeals form." It is not. The appeals form is Form SSA-3441, which must be filed in conjunction with form SSA-561. SSA-561 is essentially asking SSA's "permission to appeal," while Form SSA-3441 is actually the appeal. Your lawyer will also help you write the appeal in a way that is clear, concise, and lists multiple acceptable reasons as to why you are appealing SSA's recent decision to deny you benefits. "Lawyer language" is much more effective at getting the point across to the SSA agent that will read your appeal and your request for reconsideration.

File SSA-561 in Your State Only If It Is Required and Only If You Intend to Appeal

In some states, Form SSA-561 is not required. You can check with your lawyer to see if your state is one that does not take this form. Additionally, you should only file this form if you have already applied, you were denied, and you intend to appeal.

For more information, contact your local social security disability attorney services.