Law Office of Jennifer Zorrilla
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Don't underestimate the disability benefits application process

When a life-changing event, accident or illness results leaves an individual disabled and unable to work, the Internet may seem like a good resource for investigating disability benefits.

For example, the Social Security Administration maintains a robust website. In addition to providing an overview of the SSA’s different disability programs, such as Social Security disability insurance and Supplemental Security Income, the site also includes information on how to apply for benefits. In fact, that application information is presented in a way that makes it seem like the process will be easy. If an individual has been diagnosed with a disability, he or she may be tempted to apply for SSDI benefits without an attorney's help after visiting the SSA's website.

Unfortunately, the denial rate of SSDI claims reveals a different story. As many as two-thirds of initial applications are denied, and less than four in ten applicants prevail even after pursuing their appeal, according to SSA data. On that basis alone, it is in every disability applicant’s best interest to consult with an attorney from the outset.

Yet even for applicants who filed on their own and were denied, it may not be too late. The first step is to contact an experienced disability benefits attorney and provide him or her with all of the correspondence from the Social Security Administration. An attorney can then propose a strategy and work to ensure that all forms are properly filled out and submitted.

On the medical front, an attorney will recommend honesty with a disabled worker’s health care provider, both about symptoms that an individual is experiencing, as well as an individual’s intent to appeal a denied SSDI claim. Sharing that information with a doctor will facilitate documentation that should be included as evidence in an SSDI appeal.

Source: To find out more, please visit our firm's denied Social Security disability claims page.

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