If you suffer from a disability and are unable to work, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA). Many people apply for SSD benefits each year, and it is common for the SSA to turn down quite a few applications.
If the SSA denied your SSD benefits claim twice, your case may be sent to an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). If the ALJ still can’t approve your case, it will go to the Appeals Council. The Appeals Council will then overturn the decision of the ALJ, remand the decision, or allow the decision to stand.
A “remand” is when a higher court, such as the Appeals Council, sends your “remand case” back to the original decision maker to reconsider their ruling. In cases of SSD benefits, the case is usually sent back to the same Administrative Law Judge. The remand will include specific instructions for the ALJ on how to proceed with your case.
Remands usually happen due to problems with the procedure in determining the outcome of the case, or when evidence in the case does not match up with the court’s ruling. Remands don’t guarantee that your SSD benefits will be approved, but it is another chance for your claim to be reviewed.
When your SSD case has been remanded, it is a good idea to seek the help of a disability advocate or a lawyer to help you with your case. A lawyer will review your SSD application, as well as the remand, to determine how best to proceed with your case in order to be approved for benefits.