- We Will Fight for Your Social Security Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
- We Can Help You Prove You Qualify for Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
- We Work to Resolve Your Social Security Disability Benefit Claim, No Matter How Challenging -- We Can Help
- You May Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
- How Our SSD Lawyers Can Assist You in Getting Your Deserved Benefits
- Reasons SSA Can Deny a Pittsburgh Social Security Disability Claim
When you suffer a chronic illness or become disabled, your world is turned upside down. On top of worrying about paying your medical bills, you may also wonder how you will take care of your family if you cannot work. However, you have options. You may be able to seek benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA).
A Pittsburgh Social Security Disability lawyer can determine what benefits you are eligible for, whether it’s Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). If you have received a claim denial, we can appeal the decision. A member of our Social Security team can review your situation and determine your best course of action. Call us today for a free consultation.
We Will Fight for Your Social Security Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
At Berger and Green, we know how important disability payments are to you and your family. You need financial recovery that helps you keep the lights on and food on the table. Delayed benefits often mean missed payments for individuals with illnesses and disabilities. Our Pittsburgh Social Security Disability attorneys work to avoid this outcome for our clients.
We can help you understand your options and pursue the benefits you need. We will review your situation at no cost during a free initial consultation and advise you on next steps and how legal representation can help you. If you hire us to represent you, we will:
- Determine the Social Security benefits you may be eligible for. (Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or both)
- File your application for benefits.
- Work with the local Social Security office as your claim is processed.
- Manage your reconsideration and appeal, if needed.
- Protect your rights and interests.
- Represent you at all proceedings, including disability hearings.
What If My Pittsburgh Disability Claim Is Denied?
If the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies your initial claim, we can file a request for reconsideration. If you do not get approved during this step, we can also file your appeal and request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. Our Pittsburgh disability benefits lawyers can represent you during this hearing and fight for the benefits you need and deserve.
It can take more than a year to get disability benefits if the SSA does not approve your initial application. During that time, we could help you pursue additional compensation if your impairments stem from a personal injury accident. Berger and Green has helped Pennsylvania accident victims for more than 40 years. We can build a strong case and pursue the financial compensation you deserve.
We Are Here to Fight for You
The Social Security Disability attorneys at Berger and Green have secured favorable decisions for clients in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia and other surrounding areas. Our law firm is proud to have attorneys who remain current on all the changes in Social Security law and care about their clients’ well-being.
Staying on top of these changes enables us to identify problem areas with denied claims and help submit applications for our clients to help them get the benefits they need.
At Berger and Green, our Social Security Disability lawyers serving Pittsburgh understand that physical or mental disabilities can dramatically affect your life. Because of this, we will go after the benefits you deserve and fight for the full amount of back pay owed to you.
You Pay Us Nothing Up Front to Represent Your SSD Case
Our Pittsburgh Social Security Disability lawyers accept cases on an affordable, contingency fee basis. This means you will not pay us any money unless we win your case. If we cannot get you the benefits you deserve, we do not get paid.
There are no risks for our clients this way. You may already be in a difficult spot financially. So, we do not want to make it worse by asking you to pay upfront or hourly fees. What’s most important to us is getting you benefits, so you can focus on your health. You can learn more about the maximum lawyer fees we can charge for a Social Security Disability case on our website. Call Berger and Green to get started on your case.
For a free legal consultation with a Personal Injury lawyer serving Pittsburgh, call 412-661-1400
We Can Help You Prove You Qualify for Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
All Social Security Disability benefits applicants must prove they are eligible for benefits. Before you can receive them, you must prove to SSA that you have a condition that:
- Is long-term, permanent, or terminal
- Prevents you from working a job and earning a living
There are two ways you can prove you suffer a qualifying impairment:
Meeting a Published Impairment Listing
To determine if you have a disabling impairment, the SSA will consult its “Blue Book.”This document contains dozens of potentially disabling impairments it considers severe enough to be a disability.
The Blue Book describes clear definitions of disability under many diagnoses. Your conditions, doctor treatment, testing, and physical examinations must fit verbatim into the SSA’s Blue Book definition. If the condition meets this definition, your ability to perform work activity does not need to be assessed. You could also qualify for benefits if your listing is not in the Blue Book of impairments.
When we file your application, we will ensure the SSA has the right information about your medical providers. It is also important to work with your doctors on a Social Security case. They can explain your condition’s severity and refer you to the right medical professionals for treatment. They can also explain how your condition affects your quality of life and provide the medical documentation proving your claim. When a medical professional who knows your condition, they can confirm:
- Your medical history and current condition
- Your diagnosis’ timeline
- The medications you need
- Your treatment plans and their progress
Proving Your Residual Functional Capacity (RFC)
If you do not meet the criteria in the Blue Book, you may be able to get benefits based on your residual functional capacity instead. Your RFC is an evaluation of your remaining abilities.
If this evaluation finds that you cannot work your previous job (or any other job), you will likely get approved for benefits. There are three ways the SSA can evaluate your RFC:
- They will use your medical records and evidence to evaluate your RFC.
- They will ask your doctor to evaluate your RFC based on their knowledge of your case.
- You may be required to attend a consultative exam paid for by the Social Security Administration to evaluate your RFC.
Pittsburgh Social Security Disability Lawyer Near Me 412-661-1400
We Work to Resolve Your Social Security Disability Benefit Claim, No Matter How Challenging — We Can Help
The Social Security Disability (SSD) application claims process is complex and challenging. In many cases, applicants receive denials, which is common. Our legal team will not leave you to go through it on your own. We will be there for you from start to finish. Your Pittsburgh Social Security Disability lawyer will file your application and take you through the steps of the appeals process if necessary.
What If You Cannot Work in Pittsburgh Because of a Disability?
If you cannot work due to a disability, you might be entitled to disability benefits. However, recovering these benefits is not simple. To get the benefits you deserve, you need to provide proof of your disability and other qualifications.
Your work history and income are typically simple to prove. However, it is often much more difficult to prove you suffer from a health condition that impairs your ability to work to the degree the SSA requires.
Many people attempt to file a Social Security Disability application without outside help. We encourage you to contact us before you submit your claim, though. By filing your application we can help clients gain approval the first time and avoid the appeals process.
You May Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
Social Security Disability consists of two programs that may be able to help you make ends meet if you cannot work because of a qualifying impairment. Each program has separate rules and regulations.
In general, disabled people will likely qualify for one or the other. Some people who earned low wages throughout their career may qualify for both, though.
SSDI Is for People with an Established Work History
Social Security Disability Insurance is a program for those who have earned enough work credits by working part-time or full-time for most of their adult life. How many credits you need depends on your age.
This program provides a bridge to Social Security retirement if you suffer an impairment that prevents you from working before you reach retirement age.
There is a cap on income earned from a job worked while receiving SSDI benefits, but there are no limits on unearned income or assets. Once you reach full retirement age, SSDI converts to Social Security retirement.
SSI Provides Income for Those With Few Assets and Little Income
Supplemental Security Income is a needs-based program that provides income to pay bills and make ends meet. To qualify, you:
- Must have a qualifying impairment
- Have little income from any source
- Have few assets
You can have a home and vehicle and still qualify for SSI as long as you meet other qualifications.
Is It Possible to Receive SSI and SSDI at the Same Time?
Yes, it is possible to receive SSDI and SSI at the same time if you meet the qualifications for both programs. This is known as receiving “concurrent benefits.” As the SSA explains, a person’s return to work can affect the status of their concurrent benefits. How this affects a person depends on their specific situation.
People who qualify for both programs could receive a monthly SSDI benefits award that is too low, which could mean they can apply for SSI.
People eligible for both could be in several situations that make receiving awards from both programs possible. Such individuals could have:
- Stopped working because they became disabled early in their careers
- Earned low wages while working
- Not worked a full-time job during the ten years before their impairment
We can review your situation and advise you on whether receiving SSDI and SSI concurrently could work for you. As noted, both programs have strict and complex requirements, so it helps to know what those are and how they work before determining if this option is for you.
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How Our SSD Lawyers Can Assist You in Getting Your Deserved Benefits
We know the Social Security Disability process can be overwhelming and complex. This is especially true for disabled claimants already facing the disappointment of an initial claim denial. From the moment you hire us to represent you, our Social Security Disability lawyers serving Pittsburgh will provide comprehensive support and service.
Here are just some of the things we do to help you get disability benefits:
- Complete and file your initial application, ensuring you avoid unnecessary or time-delaying errors.
- Identify any gaps or deficiencies in supporting medical evidence and get the right documents to fulfill the SSA’s requirements.
- Identify any administrative or technical reasons for the SSA’s denial and fix any problems.
- File the necessary documents to request a reconsideration or hearing.
- Represent you at your hearing before an Administrative Law Judge.
We will evaluate your legal issue and give you advice that makes sense for your situation. We are here to answer your questions and look out for your interests while protecting your rights. We will ensure you understand the issues with your benefits application and answer your questions.
Reasons SSA Can Deny a Pittsburgh Social Security Disability Claim
The SSA can deny SSI or SSDI claims for various reasons, such as:
- The applicant left essential information off the form, such as their full name, birth date, or Social Security number
- The applicant failed to fill out the form entirely, leaving sections blank.
- The applicant did not have the proper number of work credits to qualify for SSDI.
- The applicant did not meet the income or asset limits for SSI benefits.
- There is another issue with the application.
It is also possible to receive a claim denial if the disability examiner does not think you have an impairment that qualifies you for benefits. Applicants who do not follow their doctor’s prescribed treatment and people whose disability is not severe enough to last at least 12 months may receive a claim denial.
If you receive a denial letter from the SSA, it should explain the reason for the denial. If you applied for SSDI and SSI, you should receive a notice saying why SSA denied your claims for both programs.
You Still Have Options After an SSDI or SSI Claim Denial
The good news is we can help our clients go after the benefits they deserve, even if the SSA denies their claim.
Once you receive a denial letter, you have 60 days to file a request for reconsideration or request a hearing. This means you should call our law firm immediately after your Pittsburgh disability benefits denial. If we cannot file an appeal before this deadline, you must file a new application.
Not filing a timely appeal may prevent you from collecting all the back pay or past-due benefits you deserve.
What Is the Approval Rate for the Reconsideration Stage?
The approval rate for the reconsideration stage is low. However, many of our clients are successful at their hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. This hearing allows us to present the evidence that supports your claim in front of an impartial ALJ who then rules on your case.
If you do not receive a favorable decision at your hearing, there are additional stages for appeal.
Testimonials Affirm How We Advocate for Social Security Disability Clients in PA
Some of our past clients have left the following glowing reviews:
- “I would like to express my extreme gratitude for helping me and my family with my case. I appreciate Bill Kenny and his staff for getting the job well done. I will continue to recommend Berger and Green to family & friends as needed. 1000 times thank you!!!” – Sean
- “Working with them, I could say was excellent… I never had to come down to Pittsburgh, with my medical condition it would have been very difficult to make a trip. I live approximately 50 miles away… All along the way I was well-informed.” – Lyman
- “They were just very compassionate and understanding and they let me speak. They let me explain what was going on. They took the time, they took the effort and it was… a phenomenal experience.” – Arthur
- “Everyone at Berger and Green was extremely helpful and professional throughout my case. They answered all my questions and continue to provide support as needed. I highly recommend their services!” – Kelli
- “Everyone I have spoken to have been very nice and listened to what I said. When I left messages they replied quickly and answered my questions. Fully recommend them! I would definitely use them again.” – Susan
- “I personally had a great experience with Berger and Green. They answered all my questions in a timely manner. I would highly recommend them completely.” – Carol
- “Berger and Green help me through a difficult process. They were with me all the way. They were very professional and always return my call in a timely manner. I highly recommend them to anyone going through the disability process.” – Terri
Call Us Today for a Free Consultation for a Pittsburgh Social Security Disability Claim
Call Berger and Green for your free consultation to learn how our attorneys can help you resolve a Pittsburgh Social Security Disability denial. For more than 40 years, the disability benefits attorneys at our law office have helped many people in Pittsburgh and surrounding areas with their cases for benefits.
We will discuss your rights and options with you and help get you in the best position to acquire benefits. We are ready to start on your case. Reach out to us today.