If you have been diagnosed with a medical condition that is hindering your ability to work, you may be wondering about the Social Security Disability application process. Perhaps you have already taken the steps necessary to get the ball rolling. Regardless of where you are in the process, enlisting the help of an experienced Social Security Attorney or Disability Advocate is always a good idea.
What Are the Advantages of Hiring a Disability Lawyer or Advocate?
Anyone who has been through the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) process will tell you that it is complicated and time-consuming, even for the most intelligent of people. There are many nuances that are difficult to understand.
For example, the majority of disability claims are initially denied, often due to the applicant’s inability to provide sufficient medical evidence. Additionally, there are specific deadlines that must be met throughout the application process. If your claim is denied you only have 60 days to file the appropriate paperwork for an appeal. Unfortunately, the Social Security Administration (SSA) is not very forgiving if you miss an important deadline. Additionally, if you are denied, and you decide to request a disability hearing, you may face wait times of up to two years for a hearing date. As you can see, there is so much that goes into successfully winning a claim.
There are numerous advantages to hiring an experienced Social Security Disability lawyer or advocate. First and foremost, an experienced attorney will serve as your advocate. Bound by professional rules and ethical obligations, your lawyer will handle your case carefully.
Further, working with the SSA can be like speaking another language. While it might be challenging for you to understand all the nuances, your Disability lawyer knows that language well. He or she can help communicate on your behalf, acting as your “translator” so to speak.
Disability lawyers and advocates understand precisely how to present your case to give you the best chances of winning your claim. The key component to any SSDI case is providing adequate medical evidence. In addition to helping you understand what medical information is needed, your attorney can assist you in collecting and presenting the relevant medical documentation.
If your case does need to be appealed at a disability hearing, your lawyer can prepare you for that meeting, helping you to feel at ease and to know exactly what to expect. He or she will identify and prepare appropriate witnesses on your behalf as well.
These are just a few of the many benefits that working with an experienced Disability attorney will offer you. While hiring an attorney is always optional, it has been shown to increase your chance for approval.
I’ve Already Submitted an Application to the SSA. Is it too Late to Hire a Disability Lawyer?
Regardless of where you are in the Social Security application process, it’s never too late to consider obtaining legal assistance with your SSDI claim.
Certainly, there are advantages to working with a Disability lawyer early on in the process. If you speak to a lawyer early, he or she can help you decide what medical evidence you need to meet a condition listed in the Blue Book. He or she may be able to work with your doctor, on your behalf, to obtain additional medical testing or documentation. Meeting a condition is the easiest way to earn financial benefits. If you can avoid an initial denial, you will save a tremendous amount of time and effort.
If you have already been denied, however, it is still a good idea to consider legal representation. From your first appeal to a disability hearing, a Disability lawyer or advocate is likely to be a valuable asset at any point in the SSDI application process.