First Time SSD Applicants: What You Need to Know
Applying for disability benefits can be overwhelming, especially if it is your first time.
There are strict deadlines to meet, paperwork to be submitted and medical records to be collected.
Living with a disability can be hard enough, applying for disability benefits should not be.
Here at Berger and Green we have handled cases for over 40 years, and we have some tips for you!
Whether it is your first time applying or not, here are some helpful tips when applying for disability benefits.
Apply As Soon As Possible:
You should apply for Social Security disability benefits as soon as possible. If you become disabled and will be unable to work or your disability is life threatening, do not hesitate to apply. The process for receiving these monthly payments and benefits can take a long time. It is important that you begin the application process early so that you can begin receiving benefits as soon as possible.
Understand What Benefits You Qualify For:
When you become disabled, it can be confusing trying to figure out which type of Social Security benefits you may be entitled to.
To be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) you must be disabled and meet certain low-income requirements. If you are under the age of 65, disabled, and have worked and paid into Social Security you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Benefits (SSD). The Social Security Administration will determine which benefits you are eligible for.
Submit all Required Paperwork:
Once you file your application for disability benefits you will be asked to submit different forms of paperwork throughout the process. It is important you submit all the required information and do so in a timely manner.
If you have questions about this paperwork, you can contact the SSA or if you have an attorney on your case, they can handle this paperwork for you.
Not submitting all the required paperwork, in the time frame given, could mean winning or losing your disability case.
Continue with Medical Care:
Medical records are the main pieces of evidence the SSA looks at when making a decision on your SSD claim. The SSA wants to see that you have sought treatment for your conditions. If you fail to follow through with medical treatment, the SSA might view your disability as not as limiting as you say it is.
File An Appeal If Needed:
When a person is denied their SSD or SSI application, a reconsideration request must be filed.
It is very common for people to be denied at both the application and reconsideration level. Do not let this discourage you. You can now file an appeal for a request for a hearing.
You need to file an appeal, in the time frame you are given, to submit your request for a hearing.
Approval at a hearing in front of an administrative law judge is very possible at this stage. Success is very possible because you can appear before the Judge and tell him or her about your disability in your own words. Having an experienced attorney on your side will help as well.
Consult a Social Security Disability Attorney:
Having representation helps win SSD and SSI claims because the regulations that govern the Social Security Administration’s disability programs are so complex.
There are also extensive medical records to be collected, questions to answer and deadlines to meet. People often find it overwhelming to manage the process alone.
If you are considering applying for either SSD or SSI benefits, do not delay. Contact an experienced Social Security Disability Attorney to find out how. Call the Social Security Disability attorneys at Berger and Green at 412-661-1400 for a free no obligation consultation to discuss your claim.