If you have applied for Social Security Disability benefits, or you are getting ready to apply, you may believe you need a Social Security Disability lawyer to help you. However, depending on your situation, you may not need a disability attorney at all.
Although a Social Security attorney can help you with your initial application if you need it, we don’t generally get involved in your disability claim until you’re denied. The reason for this is simple. If you apply for benefits and you get approved immediately, an attorney hasn’t done much to help you win your case. There’s no reason for us to take a fee from your benefits if you are immediately approved.
Most Social Security Disability Claims are Denied
Unfortunately, most disability claims are denied after the initial application. Do not get discouraged – about 70% of disability claims are denied at first and have to be appealed. This does not mean you do not have a good case or that you do not qualify for benefits. It simply means that you have to go through a few more steps before your claim may be approved.
If your disability claim has been denied, you will need to appeal this decision. The appeal process has several different levels and can take quite some time.
A lawyer can help guide you through the Social Security Disability appeals process. There are several ways a lawyer that specializes in Social Security Disability cases can be useful during the appeals process:
Gather and Submit Additional Evidence to the Social Security Administration
The Social Security Administration (SSA) often requires more information about your condition in order to make a more informed decision. An experienced disability attorney can collect this information and provide it to the right people. This information can include medical records – both from your past and current providers – and doctor’s opinions about your conditions and ability to function. While this may seem like a lot of information, it will help explain your case in more detail and help the judge make a more informed decision.
Conduct Legal Research About Your Disability Case
After you’ve been denied, your attorney can request your entire file from the SSA so they can review it. This review will help them identify what can be done to improve your chances on appeal. After studying your file, a Social Security disability lawyer may do legal research for your case to present to the judge at your disability hearing. An experienced attorney may also develop new arguments for why you should receive disability benefits. In either case, this will help the judge better understand why you are entitled to benefits.
Help You Prepare For Your Disability Hearing
If your claim has been denied, it’s likely you will need to have a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge. Before the hearing, your attorney will prepare you for the questions the judge will ask. They will tell you the best ways to help the judge fully understand your abilities and your limitations. An attorney can also question any experts that testify at the hearing in order to present the most accurate picture of your situation.
Throughout the entire process, your attorney will be there to explain what is happening and why. If you have been denied Social Security Disability benefits, call our office today at 1-319-774-1542 and speak with our Social Security attorneys.