Social Security disability benefits are often an important part of maintaining an individual's financial lifeline. Without them, Oklahoma residents who are unable to work may be left without the resources they need to secure housing, pay their utilities, and put food on their tables. While not every application for disability benefits will fulfill the requirements set forth by the Social Security Administration, individuals should not have their request for disability benefits denied due to discrimination.
Discrimination happens in many places and under various circumstances, including when an applicant submits paperwork to request disability benefits. Individuals are protected from discrimination based on their race, gender, religion, national origin, and other protected classifications. If one of these classifications is used to make a detrimental benefits decision, then the individual may have recourse with the Social Security Administration.
For example, if a person believes that a Social Security Administration employee denied their application for benefits due to the applicant's religion, then they may submit a written complaint to the Social Security Administration. They may also make a verbal complaint, but that complaint will still be reduced to writing by the SSA. It is probably best for an individual to submit their own written complaint, that way it is presented exactly as they wish instead of relying on the interpretation of another. A written complaint merely begins the review process, though. It should be noted, however, that this process is not the appropriate way to have a denied application reviewed if its initial denial was not based on a discriminatory intent. A person has 180 days to file their complaint to have their matter reviewed and must provide specific information in order to have their matter processed.
No person should have their disability benefits denied due to the prejudices of others. Legal support may benefit those who believe that discrimination played a role in the denial of their disability benefits.