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Four Ways an Attorney Can Improve Your Social Security Application

The Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs provide many individuals with the funds they need to seek medical care and cover daily expenses despite the difficulties of living with a disability.

Because this money comes from the government, the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies the majority of applications. Understanding what the SSA is looking for in your application can strengthen your chances.

Perhaps the most important step that you can take is to partner with an experienced Social Security attorney before you submit your application. In this blog, we list four ways that a lawyer’s expertise enhances your application.

  1. Submit your application in a timely manner

If you struggle with conditions created by your disability, you likely feel like you don’t have enough time to handle all of your obligations. You may find that you tire or lose focus before you’re able to complete certain tasks, even when you know that they’re important.

Unfortunately for some individuals who attempt to apply for SSDI or SSI on their own, the limitations of their disability result in postponing or never even completing their applications.

When you begin to work with an attorney, you have a partner who can keep the process on track even when you have other responsibilities to attend to. Additionally, your attorney can give you an idea of how long each step of the process may take so you can plan accordingly.

  1. Avoid Miscommunications

Many initial application denials occur due to some form of miscommunication. This miscommunication often occurs because self-represented applicants are not familiar with the language used on Social Security forms or the requirements of the application process.

This miscommunication could affect how you interact with the Social Security office.  During your application, you will need to answer questions and appear for examinations. If Social Security can’t reach you, your claim can be rejected without even considering the medical evidence.

As you apply, you will also need to make sure the medical records are received by Social Security.  An experienced attorney can help make sure your providers respond to the requests for your records.

Did you know that you can be found disabled, even though you continued to work?  An experienced Social Security attorney can help you determine an appropriate onset date for your disability and potentially get you more money. 

  1. Produce the Full Picture of Your Situation

Social Security requires forms be completed as part of the application process. For individuals with no prior experience in the SSDI or SSI application process, understanding what information each question is looking for may prove difficult. For example, many first-time applicants inadvertently minimize the impact their disability has on their everyday life in their paperwork.

With the help of an attorney, you can answer each question honestly and fully to ensure that the representative evaluating your claim has all of the information that he or she would specifically ask for if you were speaking face-to-face.

  1. Reduce the Risk of a Technical Denial

A large number of SSDI and SSI application rejections occur due to technical errors. These technical errors have nothing to do with the disability in question — just the paperwork submitted to substantiate the severity of the condition or injury.

Unfortunately, when you’re the only person who works on your application, you may struggle to spot these mistakes before submitting your paperwork, especially since you don’t have prior experience in this area.

Your lawyer will check over your forms to ensure you have no:

  • Blank boxes or missing answers
  • Inaccurate facts, such as when you last worked
  • Unclear responses

As you prepare your SSDI or SSI application, consider meeting with an experienced attorney to ensure that your application is as thoroughly prepared as possible. Your attorney can provide the benefits listed above as well as other case-specific insights to your claim.

Already having an attorney can also expedite the appeals process should your application be rejected for any reason. Many clients are overwhelmed with just making it through another day, and they may miss appeal deadlines.  An attorney can save months on processing but timely submitting your appeals. 

For expert and approachable legal advice on SSDI and SSI claims, trust Glen Cook, Social Security Attorney. We can help you make your application as compelling as possible.