Filing A Social Security Disability Claim: When? How? What?

By Disability Group

Applying for social security disability benefits may seem like an intimidating process but with the correct information, the application process becomes far less daunting. Below is a guide to get you started.

When Should I File A Claim?

The purpose of disability benefits is to provide disabled individuals with financial assistance since they are no longer able to work as a result of their disability. Therefore, you should file a claim for disability benefits as soon as you believe that your disability prevents you from engaging in full-time work.

How Do I File A Claim?

When seeking benefits through either Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you must first file an application.

  • Apply Online

The Social Security Administration’s (SSA) website provides informative and useful information about the entire disability benefits process. Applications can be found at http://www.ssa.gov/applyfordisability/ .

  • Apply In Person

You can either call or go into your local SSA office, where a representative will be able to assist you in completing the application. Visit www.socialsecuritylaw.com to find your local SSA office.

  • Hire a representative

Though the majority of people file an initial application for disability benefits on their own, it is important to realize that the knowledge and experience a representative can bring to the table may be invaluable. When considering whether or not to obtain representation, it is worth noting that disability attorneys work on a contingency basis, which means that they are not entitled to payment unless you are awarded benefits.

What Type Of Information Will I Need?

When filing your claim you will need to supply a variety of information. The following is a list of information you should be prepared to provide at the time you file your claim.

You will need:

  • Your social security number and proof of age.
  • Medical records from all your current medical providers.
  • Employment information dating back 15 years.
  • Information about your income and assets.
  • Information about the daily activities you partake in.
  • The date you believe your disability began, commonly referred to as the onset date.

If your initial application is denied, which happens to approximately 60% of all initial applications, make sure to appeal, and do so in a timely manner. Click here for information about SSA’s appeals process. Remember that seeking social security benefits can potentially be a very lengthy process. Stay positive and prepare yourself for what may be a very long haul.

For more information on the application process please visit www.ssa.gov.

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