If someone were to do a poll of what is most frustrating about the process of filing a Social Security Disability claim, there's a good chance that two common problems would surface near the top of the list. As many San Diego residents know, people with disabilities that prevent them from working are far too often denied legitimate claims. Their only way of getting benefits is to go through a complex appeals process.
Another leading frustration with the SSDI process: the waiting. Just to hear if your claim has been approved or rejected can take months. For someone suffering from a terminal illness, even a wait of a few months can be a lifetime.
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio wants to eliminate the 5-month waiting period all approved applicants have to endure before benefits start arriving -- even those who are terminally ill. According to a recent news article, Democrat Brown and Republican co-sponsor Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming have reintroduced a 2013 bill that sought to eliminate the mandated waiting period.
We'll see if the bill gets approval as the debate over SSDI funding heats up over the coming months. Even if the Brown-Barrasso bill passes, it's unlikely the duo would be able to fix the appeals process as well.
Right now, an administrative law judge examines medical documents, questions the applicant and witnesses before deciding your case. Fortunately, claimants are allowed legal counsel in these proceedings. They can have at their side a San Diego attorney experienced in SSDI appeals.
A skilled appeals lawyer helps clients gather needed medical documents and prepare for the crucial administrative hearing.