What You Should Know Before You Apply for Social Security Disability

Dec 18, 2015
by The Atkins & Markoff Team

What You Should Know Before You Apply for Social Security Disability

Before you hit ‘submit’ or send in your Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income Payments (SSI) application, it is important that you understand the various requirements of each program. SSDI applications can be quite complicated, especially if this is your first time filling out an application of this nature. Many people whip through the application process, thinking the sooner they get it in, the better. However, not taking your time or having a social security lawyer help you with the application could make things far more difficult for you down the line. Social Security’s disability program was put in place in order to offer those who can no longer work because of an injury, illness, or disability a means to live. This program has proven to be quite beneficial for many people, but others have been met with frustration when it comes to applying for these handy benefits. Before you apply, take a look at the below generalizations and – misconceptions – about applying for SSDI. Keep in mind it may also be a good idea to get in touch with the Social Security Administration (SSA) or a knowledgeable social security benefits lawyer. The attorneys at Atkins & Markoff have the experience necessary to help you with your SSDI application, making sure everything is filled out and nothing is missed before you hit submit.

Here are a few things to keep in mind before going through the SSDI application process:

  • You must qualify for the program. Before you apply for SSDI, it is important to make sure you actually qualify. There are two main disability benefit programs offered by the SSA, social security disability insurance and supplemental security income. The SSA will determine which you qualify for, and if you are eligible for both, you will likely only receive compensation for the program that will give you the highest rate.
  • It is a misconception that most people get approved on their first application. Due to the complicated nature of the SSDI program, many people do not get approved on their initial application, contrary to popular belief. Truth be told, SSA denies most first applications, whether because of an error on the application or some other reason. The majority of people will have to apply twice before they are approved.
  • Attorneys cannot speed up the process. SSDI applications are all processed based on the order in which they were received. There is nothing an attorney can do to speed up this process, unfortunately. The majority of delays in determining eligibility are due to the SSA waiting on responses from doctors or information from the applicant.
  • You can apply for SSDI online. In the past, the only way you could apply for disability benefits was by submitting a paper applications. However, the SSA now allows people to apply online, which takes far less time than the paper application.
  • You may need to appear in court after you submit your application. In some instances, SSDI applicants will be called to appear before a judge in a federal court. If you are called, the judge may ask you questions about your disability, injury, or illness and may also require you to undergo a medical evaluation in order to substantiate your claim.
  • It is recommended that you hire a lawyer to assist you. Once again, because the SSDI application program can be so complicated and take a significant amount of time to be approved, we recommend hiring a disability lawyer. An Oklahoma disability lawyer who is well-versed in these cases can help you file your application and may also be of assistance in court.

If you have any questions about the SSDI application process, please do not hesitate to contact a disability attorney from Atkins & Markoff today.