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Complicated and confusing.
The Social Security application process can be complicated; with confusing steps, complicated documents, and seemingly endless waiting and hoping. Having an experienced, personable SSD attorney representative to walk you through the process can relieve a lot of stress and make the process smoother and less mysterious.
Heermans Disability LawThe Process
The general steps that a disability claim follows
A claimant can file their own initial application, complete with medical information, treatment dates, and numerous other responses to the questions required by the SSA. This application can be processed online, and it begins the journey. An attorney rep can also begin this application process for you, as soon as you provide the required information.
Regardless of the legitimacy of the claim and medical impairments, most initial applicants are rejected by the SSA. The next step is reconsideration. After initial denial, the reconsideration process can also be finished online, by the claimant or by the attorney rep. Note: some states do not require the reconsideration step.
Appeal to hearing
Like the initial application, most reconsideration requests are denied. Most people who receive disability benefits end up at a face to face hearing in front of a federal administrative judge. The appeal must be filed online within a certain period of time after the decision on reconsideration. This is the part of the process where a claimant should strongly consider hiring an attorney rep to assist. Collection of medical records, uploading said records electronically, formulating a strategy, submitting a brief, and preparing the claimant for the particular judge and hearing are several things an attorney rep can help you with.
After the hearing, there will be a decision timeframe where the Judge will review the records, your testimony, and come to a decision. The decision will either be “favorable” or “unfavorable,” which means simply approved or not approved. If the decision is unfavorable at this stage, it can be appealed further if the decision warrants it.