Contact your local SSA office or go to ssa.gov to complete the initial application.
Request for Reconsideration
If your initial application is denied, you have 65 days, (60 days plus 5 days for mailing), to file a Request for Reconsideration in which your claim will be reviewed by someone who did not make the initial determination.
Request for ALJ Hearing
If your Request for Reconsideration is denied, you have 65 days, (60 days, plus 5 days for mailing), to file a Request for Hearing by Administrative Law Judge.
Request for Review of ALJ Hearing
If the ALJ denies your claim, you can file a Request for Review to the Appeals Council in Falls Church, VA within 65 days (60 days plus 5 days for mailing) of the date of your unfavorable decision.
File Civil Lawsuit in Federal District Court
If the Appeals Council upholds the ALJ’s unfavorable decision or decides not review your claim, you can file a civil lawsuit in Federal District Court, which is the last level of the appeals process.