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UNDERSTANDING THE CPP DISABILITY CLAIM APPEAL PROCESS


A lawyer reviews an application for a CPP disability appeal.


Are you out of luck if you receive a denial letter after applying for CPP disability benefits? No! You have the right to appeal the denial. Most CPP disability claims are denied not because the applicant isn’t disabled, but because of the way the application was presented.


Let’s have a look at the steps to take after receiving a CPP disability denial letter.


Step 1 – Don’t Give Up!


If you have already applied for CPP disability benefits and been denied, don’t give up. The ideal first step is to reach out to a skilled CPP disability lawyer as soon as possible. You have options, and your lawyer can explain them to you, as well as the deadlines that apply at each stage. The deadlines that apply to the CPP disability appeal process are strict and relatively short, so you should not delay in seeking help with your CPP disability appeal.


Step 2 – Understand Why Your Claim Was Denied


If you have been denied benefits, your lawyer can help you find out why and how to fix it. The denial letter should set out the reasons why your application was denied. Sometimes the letter is not clear on the reason your application was denied. In that situation, you can request a copy of your CPP disability file by submitting a Personal Information Request form to find out why Service Canada made the decision it did.


Step 3 – Gather Additional Supporting Documents


Gather any new or extra information that Service Canada did not have that could change its decision, such as medical reports that outline your functional limitations or detailed descriptions of attempts to return to work that failed due to your medical condition.


Step 4 – CPP Disability Reconsideration Appeal


If your application for CPP disability benefits has been denied, you can request a “Reconsideration Appeal.” A reconsideration is brought directly to Service Canada. It must be brought within 90 days of the day you received the denial letter from Service Canada.


To start the reconsideration process, a “Request for Reconsideration” must be submitted to Service Canada. It can be submitted by way of a letter or by using Service Canada’s form. The reconsideration is decided by Service Canada’s medical adjudicators, who re-assess your claim, including reviewing your original application and any new information or documentation submitted. The medical adjudicator can request more information from you and can even request that you see another doctor.


Service Canada will mail you a decision about the reconsideration; this usually takes several months. If Service Canada changes its original decision, your application is approved, and you will begin to receive CPP disability benefits.


Step 5 – Appeal to The Social Security Tribunal General Division


If you don't agree with Service Canada’s reconsideration decision or their reasons for making it, you can appeal to the Social Security Tribunal of Canada. The Tribunal is separate from Service Canada and has the authority to make a different decision.


You start your appeal by filing a Notice of Appeal explaining why Service Canada’s decision is wrong. You must do this within 90 days of receiving the reconsideration decision. A hearing with witnesses may be required. The hearing is your chance to provide testimony and evidence to support your case. Your lawyer will make written and/or oral submissions on your behalf.


Your appeal will be decided by a single member of the General Division of the Tribunal. It usually takes a few months to receive the Tribunal’s decision. If the Tribunal member allows your appeal, you will begin to receive CPP disability benefits. If the Tribunal member denies your appeal, the next step is to appeal to the Appeal Division of the Tribunal.


Step 6 – Appeal to The Social Security Tribunal Appeal Division


If you don’t agree with the General Division’s decision, the next option is to appeal to the Tribunal’s Appeal Division. However, you must request permission to appeal to the Appeal Division, which is more formally known as “seeking leave to appeal.” The Tribunal decides whether to grant leave to allow your appeal to go ahead.


If leave is granted, you essentially get a new hearing before the Appeal Division. If leave is denied or if you are not successful on your appeal to the Appeal Division, you may (in rare cases) be able to ask for a “judicial review.” A judicial review is a request to the court to review a decision based on a legal and/or factual mistake in a decision made by aa administrative tribunal.


Need Guidance for The CPP Disability Claim Appeal Process in Calgary, Alberta, And Saskatchewan?


If your application has been denied, it’s highly recommended that you seek legal representation without delay for assistance with the CPP disability claim appeal process.

At all stages, your lawyer will be there to gather critical evidence and help you put the best, strongest case forward. Remember that most CPP disability claims and appeals are denied due to the way they are presented; your lawyer will ensure that your submissions are tailored to hit all the key points and satisfy the CPP disability eligibility requirements.


Ludwar Law Firm has over 25 years of experience representing clients with CPP disability claims and appeals in Calgary, Alberta, and Saskatchewan . Our clients appreciate that we take the time to explain their options, what is required to bring an appeal, and what to expect during the appeal process. Our legal expertise has helped win even difficult CPP disability claims appeals involving depression, chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia.


There is no requirement that your lawyer be located within your province. Our firm handles CPP disability cases across Canada. We offer virtual consultations and can deliver all services remotely, including appearing at the Social Security Tribunal hearing, which is typically held via phone or videoconference. That means you can have the benefit of working with an experienced CPP disability lawyer without ever having to leave your home.


We welcome you to contact us today to schedule your free consultation. We’ll help you get the CPP disability benefits you deserve.


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