SSDI application - filled it out without legal help
Do I need a lawyer to complete my SSDI application?
Recently on our disability forum we had a user who asked what the implications are if they completed the SSDI application without legal help or without talking to a disability lawyer. This blog will address this issue and what the user needs to do now if they believe they need legal help.
Filling out the SSDI application
One our most common questions posed by a disability applicant is, How can I get help completing the disability application? The truth is that even if you hire a disability lawyer many of them will not complete the application for you. There are various reasons for this, but the most common is that a disability lawyer simply does not have the time to complete the disability application for every one of their disability clients.
So if you need help completing your disability application you can either find a disability advocate or lawyer that provides this service, talk to a family member or friend who can help you, or hire a company who provides this service.
Does it matter if I completed my own SSDI application?
Many disability applicants do research and find out exactly what information the Social Security Administration needs and what requirements they must meet to be considered disabled for the SSA program and are more than capable of completing their own SSDI application.
Applicants that are willing and able to do the research may be able to save themselves money by NOT hiring a lawyer, but the problem is that many applicants are either too sick or not able to navigate what can be a very difficult and confusing application process and end up wasting months (or years) floundering in the system.
Filled out application alone but now my SSDI application was denied
Most disability lawyers choose to get involved with a disability claimant after they have filled out their own SSDI application and have been denied. If you have been denied and do not understand the appeals process or you think a lawyer can help you fight your denial immediately following a denial of the SSDI application now is the perfect time to call a lawyer.
You will have 60 days from the date of your application to file a Reconsideration, which is the first step in the appeals process. Contact a lawyer soon enough, and assuming they believe you have a good case, they can file the Reconsideration paperwork for you. Wait too long and you will have to fill out the appeals paperwork on your own.
What can I expect from a disability lawyer?
If you choose to hire a lawyer make sure you understand what they can do for you. They generally cannot expedite your SSDI case or move your SSDI application to the front of the line but they can give you the best chance to win SSDI benefits at every stage in the SSDI appeals process.
If you have not hired a lawyer by the time you reach the administrative hearing level and you are scheduled to see a judge, it is highly recommended that you do so now.