Berkeley, California is home to thousands of hard-working California residents. Each time one of these residents receives a paycheck, taxes are taken out and given to the Social Security Administration.
These taxes go to pay for programs that protect us financially, such as the Social Security retirement program and the Social Security Disability program. Considering the fact that these residents pay their taxes dutifully from each paycheck they receive, they assume that these benefits will be there for them if and when they need them.
Unfortunately, when a disability arises and Social Security Disability benefits are needed, actually obtaining the benefits that are needed is not as easy as these disabled workers had expected. In fact, nearly 70 percent of the disability claims received each year are rejected by the Social Security Administration.
If you live in the Berkeley area and are in need of disability benefits from the Social Security Administration, you need to consider the services of a Berkeley Social Security Disability attorney before filing your disability claim.Berkeley, California
Despite its smaller-than-usual population by California standards, Berkeley has a thriving economy. Although the cost of living in the area is more than 60 percent higher than the national average, unemployment rates are just a bit higher, coming in at 11 percent. The top employers in the city include the University of California, Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente and the Berkeley Unified School District.
Applying for Berkeley Social Security Disability Benefits
Berkeley is home to just over 100,000 California residents. In the State of California, approximately 2.9 percent of the population receive Social Security Disability benefits. These disabled workers receive a monthly benefit amount of $1,083.80. Unfortunately, most Berkeley Social Security Disability applicants will have to wait more than two years before seeing their first disability payment from the Social Security Administration.
Why does it take so long for a Berkeley resident to begin receiving Social Security Disability payments? The truth of the matter is that the majority of Berkeley Social Security Disability applicants are denied their disability benefits during the initial stage of the application process. This results in the need for a disability appeal, which almost always involves a hearing before an administrative law judge.
Unfortunately, the office in charge of scheduling the hearings for Berkeley Social Security Disability applicants is located in Oakland, California and it takes this office an average of fifteen months just to schedule a disability hearing for a Social Security Disability applicant. This significant wait time is due to the massive backlog of appeals in the Social Security system.
Hiring a Berkeley Disability Attorney
Is there any way to increase your chances of receiving an approval of your initial disability claim, thereby avoiding the need for an appeal and a disability hearing? In some cases, the services of a qualified Berkeley Social Security Disability attorney can help.
When you work with a Berkeley Social Security attorney, the professional you hire will help you with the preparation of your disability claim, ensuring that all of your documents are in order and that your claim is submitted to the Social Security Administration in the best light possible. While this does not guarantee that your initial application will be approved by the Social Security Administration, it does increase your chances of receiving a favorable decision.
If, for some reason, your initial claim for disability benefits is denied even with the help of your attorney, your Berkeley Social Security lawyer can represent you throughout your disability appeal. For a Berkeley Social Security applicant, the appeal process will usually consist of two stages including a Request for Reconsideration and a disability hearing.
Your Berkeley disability attorney will prepare carefully for this hearing, gathering additional medical evidence to present to the administrative law judge and, if necessary, retaining expert witnesses to testify on your behalf regarding the severity of your disability and your ability to perform any type of work in the national economy.
Technically, you are allowed to represent yourself during your appeal and at your hearing. It is important to note, however, that these hearings are very complex and the laws pertaining to your disability case can change constantly.
The attorney you hire will be knowledgeable in the laws that pertain to your case and they will be able to provide you with adequate legal representation when you appear before the administrative law judge who will be overseeing your disability case. Statistics show that applicants who obtain legal representation to handle their disability hearings are more likely to receive benefits than applicants who choose to represent themselves.
A Berkeley Social Security Disability lawyer will also handle disability claims in the following cities located in Alameda County, San Joaquin County, Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, and San Francisco County: Oakland, Cerrito, Albany, San Francisco, San Pablo, San Rafael, Alameda, San Leandro, Concord, Vallejo, Martinez, Walnut Creek, San Mateo, Redwood City, and Hayward.