Will the SSA review my disability even after benefits begin?

Aug 04 2016

While the process of securing Social Security disability benefits can prove to be time-consuming and perhaps even stressful for many people, these individuals can breathe a much-needed sigh of relief when their checks from the Social Security Administration start to materialize. That’s because they no longer have to worry quite as much about their inability to work preventing them from putting food on the table, keeping the electricity on or just covering the basic necessities.

It’s important for people who receive disability benefits to understand, however, that they won’t automatically receive these benefits in the years, months or even weeks ahead. Indeed, the SSA will periodically review their medical condition to ensure that they still have qualifying disabilities.

While this may sound like a startling prospect, the general idea is that if a person’s health has not seen considerable improvement and this continues to keep them from working, disability benefits will continue.

The timetable

The SSA has established a timetable such that the recipient of disability benefits will have a general idea of when the review of their medical condition will take place. In this sense, people do not have to fear that notice of the review will randomly appear, much like an IRS audit.

In general, medical reviews abide by the following schedule:

  • If it’s expected that the condition will improve, the initial medical review will occur anywhere from six to 18 months after the date the person became disabled.
  • If improvement is a possibility, but can’t be predicted with certainty, medical reviews will occur every three years.
  • If improvement is not a possibility, medical reviews will occur every seven years.

When the time comes for a review, the recipient of disability benefits will be mailed a letter asking them to come to the nearest SSA office at a set time and date.

We’ll continue this conversation in future posts, exploring the review process and options for appealing any adverse decisions.

Please consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible if you have questions about securing disability benefits or concerns about the medical review process.