Our Disability Lawyers in NC Discuss Disability Traps
The disability lawyers in NC at the Bridgman Law Offices know that filing for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income is a process that most people only do once during their life. The Social Security Administration understands this situation well, and many times the applicant is confused regarding why the SSA moves at such a slow pace when making a final decision on disability claims. It is very important to be prepared for at least one claim denial unless your claim is based on an obvious disability that meets the list of known medical conditions that qualify within the disability administrative rules. The truth is that many disabilities take a long time period for approval because there are some traps in the system that applicants commonly fall into when first filing their claim. Patience is a real virtue when filing for disability, so be prepared and avoid these traps, especially concern response time periods.
1. Do Not Assume the SSA Is Concerned About Your Well-Being
The Social Security Administration is a government agency just like many others and all federal agencies only payout benefits when the applicant has demonstrated that are actually qualified to receive benefits. Disability income is an insurance program that is approved based on applicant tax receipts. For approval from SSA, the applicant must actually have a debilitating condition, and many times it takes multiple medical issues to win a claim. The agency does not approve claims without performing due diligence. While your doctor’s opinion can be accepted as expert testimony, many claims will also contain other medical problems that result in a disability ruling based on a totality of the evidence. Often times these cases are approved when your Charlotte disability lawyers can provide medical documentation that establishes that a particular disability is the equivalent of conditions on the known list of vocational disabilities. Claims are only approved when the proof has been supplied, and claims are often re-evaluated on regular intervals when the disabled recipient in under age 50.
2. Do Not Assume Your Claim Is Different or Unique
A disability claim is a just another disability claim to the initial claim examiners. The first step of a disability claim is almost always a denial, as SSA refuses about 70% of all claims on the first application, while another 30-40% are denied in the first hearing with an administrative law judge. In addition, the government has a 60-day response period to issue a ruling and they often take almost all of that allocated time. Be sure your disability lawyers in NC have all of your medical evidence from the beginning, and follow their counsel instructions when there could potentially be more medical evidence what can contribute to your total disability percentage. Always include every medical issue regardless of how insignificant it may seem, as the total situation usually matters, and be sure to comply with any requests from the Social Security Administration or your legal counsel if they request seeing additional doctors.
3. Do Not Believe the Doctor’s Diagnosis Established Your Disability
Official disability rulings are always approved by the Social Security Administration. While your doctor diagnosis and prognosis are crucial to your claim approval, the SSA makes the final official decisions in disability and often uses the multiple opinions of all of your doctors before approving your claim. Always remember that filing for SSDI is not a claim that you are disabled. It is a claim that you cannot earn a living or maintain substantive gainful employment, termed SGE within the agency, based on the disabling conditions. Disability decisions are made using differing rules including the age of the applicant and their ability to perform sedentary work or be retrained. The sedentary work rule is not used for individuals who are over 50 years of age and have multiple medical issues. The ability to adapt to new employment is difficult within itself, and the SSA recognizes that age plays a factor in new employment. Your Charlotte disability lawyers understand that your medical documents are what will eventually win your claim.
4. Do Not Think You Must Be Off from Work for 12 months Before Filing
This is one of the most confusing rules that Social Security Administration uses when approving a claim. It is true that you must be unable to work for a six-month period, but the 12-month issue is the rule on how long your disability will last at a minimum. The SSA understands that almost all disability rulings are permanent. The six-month time period will also be exempt from receiving back pay when the claim is approved, but anyone can file on the very day they become disabled and the application process will begin. This can make a major difference in the speed of a claim approval.
5. Do Not Believe You Cannot Afford Legal Help with Your Claim
Social Security disability lawyers are governed by a contingency rule when they take a disability case. They get paid when they finally win approval of your case, and they must also have their fees approved by the Social Security Administration. The fee percentage is set at 25% by law so all applicants can have affordable help with their disability claim and still allow your disability lawyers in NC to receive a fair wage for their legal expertise. It is always a good sign when an attorney is willing to take your case because this contingency situation keeps them from taking frivolous disability claims. If an attorney does not have ample medical evidence to win your claim approval, they will let you know on the initial consultation or after they have performed an investigation and possibly confer with your doctors in crafting your case. This is why it is so important to provide thorough medical information when first talking to a potential legal representative.