If you’re unable to work because of a medical condition, the next step should be pursuing a Social Security Disability claim. It sounds simple enough, but the vast majority of applicants are denied.
Getting your disability benefits can be a complicated procedure, which is why it is recommended that you hire a Social Security lawyer to handle your disability claim. Here’s how legal representation can benefit you.
Accurately Preparing Your Initial Claim
Considering that most applicants for Social Security Disability are denied, the process can be simplified by working with an attorney from the start. Your attorney will make sure that your application has all the necessary information and documentation required by Social Security to prevent unnecessary delays or being denied altogether.
You Won’t Have to Wait in Line
Additionally, the long wait times in Los Angeles can be their own hurdle. It may be 15 to 17 months before your hearing if you attempt to file for disability on your own. Handling things over the phone also means you’ll likely be on hold for ages. If the line disconnects, you have to start all over again. It’s never fun to wait in long lines or stay on hold, but when you have a disabling condition, it makes it more unbearable. By having a lawyer to handle your disability claims, you don’t have to go anywhere to initiate your claim.
Filing of Appeals
As mentioned, most applications for Social Security Disability benefits are initially denied. Even with a Social Security lawyer, you may be issued a denial of benefits. However, an attorney experienced in this specialized area of the law knows how to handle the appeals process.
Preparing appeals is easier for someone with this knowledge, and your lawyer will know how to handle it. They will also know about the strict deadlines and make sure to meet them to get your appeal filed in plenty of time.
Managing Your Evidence
Another benefit of hiring a Social Security lawyer is that they will make sure all the evidence is presented to the SSA to show you deserve these benefits. They can provide comprehensive information about your doctors, treatments, and any hospitalizations along with supporting medical records.
Additionally, your Social Security attorney can communicate with your doctors on your behalf to get other documentation that may be necessary to support your case. It may be beneficial to have expert medical witnesses at your hearing or get evidence from former employers about how your condition prevents you from working. Whatever the case, your lawyer can create a plan and use the evidence to show the Social Security representative why you need disability benefits.
Representation During Your Hearing
Any type of hearing can be a nerve-wracking experience. Thankfully, if you have a Social Security attorney, they will be by your side when you face the judge during your Social Security hearing. Your attorney will prepare you for what will happen, allowing you to offer the most persuasive testimony in your case.
A Social Security attorney will also make the opening statement and closing argument during your hearing. Most of these hearings will involve at least one expert witness, such as a vocational expert or a doctor. Judges rely heavily on the testimony of these experts, and your lawyer can cross-examine them to help show why you need these disability benefits.
In some cases, these experts may offer unfair testimony that can ultimately hurt your case. This is why having a Social Security lawyer on your side can be instrumental in securing the benefits you deserve. Your attorney will know how to be relentless in obtaining benefits for the impairments that make you unable to work.
Handling Legal Complexities and Briefs
Throughout the Social Security claim process, it becomes more and more legally complex. Some of these cases may be appealed all the way to federal court. In these situations, you need someone that can expertly write legal briefs. To effectively write these legal briefs, it takes someone with expertise in Social Security case law.
Before you hire your Social Security attorney, make sure they have experience winning cases both at the district court level and in front of the United States Courts of Appeals.
You Won’t Have to Pay Out of Pocket
Many people that apply for Social Security Disability benefits are under the mistaken impression that if they do it themselves, they’ll save money. Unfortunately, this huge misconception can wind up costing you time. Since most claims are initially denied, you may wind up spending more money trying to handle it yourself under the guise that a DIY approach is free.
The longer you are forced to wait to get your benefits, the more money you’ll lose. It’s far more efficient and cost-effective to hire a Social Security attorney. In most cases, you will not need to pay any out-of-pocket costs upfront. If you win, your lawyer will only get a percentage of your awarded benefits. They are usually limited in the total dollar amount they can receive from winning a Social Security Disability case, too.
In the event that your attorney can’t help you get your Social Security Disability benefits, you will not pay any fees. This is what is known as a contingency fee basis.
For California residents, filing for Social Security Disability benefits can drain the last of their energy. It’s an overwhelming process to get the money you need when your medical condition keeps you from being able to work.This is why it is so important to have a Los Angeles Social Security attorney who knows the system to help you every step of the way. Most of these attorneys offer a free initial consultation, which allows you to see if you have a chance at a successful outcome for your Social Security Disability claims.