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Social Security Disability Process

Social Security Disability Process

Social Security Disability offers valuable assistance to those who are unable to work due to a disability. At any stage of the process, from beginning to end, you have the right to representation by a Sacramento Social Security disability lawyer. You do not have to have an attorney, but we have been able to help thousands through their appeals and hearings when they were originally denied SSD benefits and to reach a successful outcome for them.

The Social Security Disability Process in Sacramento, CA

Social Security Disability Insurance works similarly to any form of insurance in that periodic payments are made in exchange for a guarantee that at some future point, if you should become disabled and unable to work, you will be paid benefits to help you live. It is a federally run program, administered under the Social Security Administration and the benefits are financed from the FICA tax paid by all workers.

  1. The first step is the application. If you become disabled you can obtain the application form from your local SSA office, by phone or you can go online. Over 60% of all initial claims are denied. If this happens, you can re-file the initial claim or request reconsideration. Our office can review your initial claim and advise you on which option would be best.
  2. Request reconsideration if necessary. This must be requested within 60 days of your denial. Reconsideration denial rates are unfortunately as bad as or worse than 60%. If denied at this stage, you can again re-file a new initial claim or you can request a disability hearing. Either must be done within 60 days from receipt of your denial of reconsideration. We urge you to call us and get our help before you file. The high percentage of denials makes it an urgent issue that your claim is submitted correctly.
  3. Report additional information. If your claim is approved, it is necessary to report any additional information such as change in health, ability to work, etc. to the SSA. If you are unsure what information must be reported to the SSA, click here or contact our firm directly.

Your greatest opportunity for approval comes during the hearing phase. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) presides over the hearing and, while not required, it is strongly urged that you have legal representation. As the hearing is your strongest chance of a getting approved, a skilled and experienced attorney can greatly assist your chances.

If you are denied again, your last option at this stage is to go before the Appeals Council. More often than not they will concur with the ALJ decision. If this is the case, you can begin the process again by submitting a new initial appeal. We recommend that this is done with representation by a disability attorney to save valuable time.