Social Security Disability Benefits Checklist

Here are 9 “to do” checklist items for your Social Security Disability claim: 1.  Apply for your Social Security benefits. You need to apply for your Social Security disability and SSI benefits to be considered. If you are currently working, your earnings may or may not preclude you from applying. We can help you apply or appeal your Social Security benefits claim. Complete the information below and our law firm will contact you for a free, private, no obligation consultation.  Then keep reading below.  Waiting too long to apply can cause you to lose benefits. 2.  Appeal your application denial. Don’t take “no” for an answer. When we help clients, we plan to sign on for the long haul.  We take new clients before and after they apply for Social Security benefits. While we want you approved at the application stage, we expect a denial and we expect to appeal it. Far too often, the medical decision denying your benefits is unfair — and we prove it. 3.  Appeal reconsideration denial. You need to appeal this decision because about 90% of people are denied at this stage.  It is almost (but not quite) foolish to even think you can be approved at the reconsideration stage. Our lawyers know situations that can allow an approval, and we help our clients improve their chances. Plan to appeal a denial at this stage. If we can help you, even better. 4.  Treat for your medical problems – physical and mental. Social Security uses your medical treatment records as evidence of your disabilities. The better and more detailed the evidence, the better Social Security (and your attorney) can understand your medical problems. Treat for conditions that you should. You should not have to deal with physical or mental symptoms alone. Get help. 5.  Address trouble with health insurance. If you get cut off insurance, there may be a way to get back on.  Or get a different insurance. Or get insurance through the state. Or go to free clinics.  Or, at least, use the ER for emergencies. Sometimes you need to go out of your way to get the medical treatment you need. Without proper medical treatment, you may not have the evidence you need to prove how you feel. 6.  Talk with you doctor about any trouble you have complying with their treatment recommendations. If you are having difficult side-effects from your medication, talk with your doctor. There may be a different dosage, medication, or treatment that will help you. If you do not address problems following your doctor’s recommendations, your medical record may look like you do not want treatment. This can reflect poorly on you. Social Security deny disability benefits if you believe you are being unreasonable and medical treatment would help you.  Talk with your doctor. 7.  Get professional help for chemical dependency. Chemical dependency is absolutely one of the very best ways to shoot your Social Security benefits claim in the foot.  Get help, or Social Security can blame your problems on the chemical dependency and deny you. 8.  Ask the doctor who knows you best if you should work full-time. What does your treating doctor think about your medical limitations? Social Security will wonder about them. Why not find out your medical limitations from someone who knows you best. Talk with your doctor about whether you should work and how much. Perhaps you can get back into the work force. If so, you may make more per month than Social Security will ever pay you.  Work, if at all possible, is better than disability. How much work might end your Social Security benefits claim? This is a legal question. But if you cannot work, you absolutely need to get the best help possible to win your Social Security benefits claim. 9.  Hire a lawyer, not a corporate “advocate.” Stay informed about your rights. While Social Security allows non-attorneys to go in front of judges and argue Social Security benefits claims, you do not have to allow it.  You can pick your representation. If you know you want lawyers working in a real law firm, ask for it.  That’s what we are at You deserve to know the education and experience of our attorneys.  And we are happy to tell you. Think about it. Your representative will need to argue the law before the federal judge and cross-examine experts at your hearing. Ask for the legal representation you want.