Many (many) people file; then get denied; then give up. They wait a year or more; then file again - or, wonder whether they should. They wonder how that original claim affects things. Can they go back to the original so benefits start to accrue earlier? Here's the scoop: Yes.
You can always request that an original claim be reopened. File the second application and tell them you want the first one to be reopened. You could get the new application approved. If you are and if they Did Not go back to the original claim, appeal that part of the decision. If you are not keep adding that when you appeal.
All claims filed within 12 months of a prior claim can be reopened for any reason. If there are good reasons, a Judge will go back as far as four years.
The result is benefits begin to accrue. Assuming the national average benefit, going back results in $12,000 per year. Going back four years, results in a lump sum of $48,000 more than you would get if you did not reopen. Way too much money to ignore.