Stage 1: Application

With such a high rate of denial, the Social Security Administration is used to finding reasons not to give out Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. The application process is designed to be highly selective in order to reduce instances of program abuse. The downside of this tedious application process is that many disabled workers fall through the cracks and receive denials even though they deserve benefits.

Administrative Requirements

During the SSD application process, it is crucial that you have all of the information the system requests, that you have met all of the administrative requirements including deadlines, and that you have both proof of disability and proof of work history.

Expect a large amount of paperwork, including medical reports from physicians demonstrating proof of your health problem. You also need to prove that your work history meets the specifications set forth based on your age at the time of disability. Essentially, the Administration wants to make sure you have earned access to benefits by paying Social Security taxes.

Unfortunately for many first-time applicants, lack of knowledge of the process leads to unforeseen errors that jeopardize their approval. Hiring an SSD attorney to oversee your application process and advise you during each step can significantly improve your odds of receiving the benefits you need.

What to Do if You’re Denied

Nearly two-thirds of applications for SSD are denied, so you very well could find yourself in a position to have to aggressively prove and defend your right to receive benefits. SSD appeals are possible, but the path to reconsideration or appeal can be time-consuming and complex. A skilled SSD lawyer can handle all of the paperwork and ensure your actions are right on track, maximizing your chances of getting a “yes.”

If you hire an attorney before applying, he or she can help you optimize your application and prepare you for the possibility of denial. You’ll learn about Reconsideration, Appeal Hearing, and other options for requesting a denial review. As a last ditch effort, you also have the option of requesting a hearing in Federal District Court.

To talk to a seasoned SSD lawyer about your disability benefit eligibility, please search our legal directory to find a practice near you.