Social Security Disability Initial Claim
The First Step
If you feel that you are eligible for benefits, the first step in the application process for benefits is filing the Social Security disability initial claim. A Social Security disability initial claim can be initiated by calling the Social Security Administration 's toll free number, in person at your local Social Security Administration 's office, or online.
By Phone, Mail, or Appointment
You can file your claim over the phone and have the paperwork mailed to your home, or schedule an appointment at your local Social Security Administration office and file your claim in person. The Social Security disability initial claim is for many folks just the first of many more steps in process of qualifying and receiving Social Security Disability benefits.
Be Meticulous With Your Medical Records
After your Social Security disability initial claim is made, it is forwarded to a disability examiner at the (DDS) Disability Determination Services. The disability examiner will request your medical records. It is essential to list all of your medical information with doctors' telephone numbers and addresses.
Your Social Security disability initial claim is approved or denied based on your medical records. It is also wise to obtain copies of your own medical records from your doctors and submit them with your application.
The disability determination examiner may make his/her decision without receiving all of your records from outside sources, if he/she finds that the records received with the Social Security disability initial claim are "sufficient enough" to make a decision.
Usually, however, your Social Security disability initial claim will be filed away while the disability examiner awaits requested medical records from doctors and hospitals as well as other information.
The disability examiner then makes his/her decision with the input of a supervisor, and medical and psychological consultants. It is possible the examiner may request that you receive an additional medical exam paid for by the Social Security Administration.
After an approval or denial is made regarding your claim, you will receive notification in the mail.
Most Initial Claims Are Denied - But Don't Give Up
Please be aware that in most cases (60 to 70 percent) a Social Security disability initial claim will be denied. Don't lose hope since you can appeal the decision. You have 60 days to request what is called "Reconsideration" where the same people who rejected your Social Security disability initial claim, reconsider your "denied" claim. 90% of reconsidered claims are denied again. At this point, you, the claimant, have one more avenue to appeal DDS decision. You have 60 days to request a hearing before a judge.
Your SSD Lawyer Can Guide You Through The Process
If your Social Security disability initial claim is denied or if your "reconsideration" appeal is denied, you should definitely seek representation from a Social Security disability lawyer. It may even be wise to seek counsel from a Social Security disability attorney when first filing your Social Security disability initial claim. Your Social Security disability lawyer can ease the whole arduous process by first making sure you initially qualify to file a claim. They will then handle all the paperwork including obtaining medical records and physician recommendations for you. If your Social Security disability initial claim is denied, your Social Security disability attorney will then guide you through the appeals process as well. If you have a hearing before a judge, it is imperative to have by your side an experienced Social Security lawyer who will spend the time preparing your file for presentation.
Be Patient - The Federal Agencies Move Slowly
Do not become discouraged by the process of filing for disability. It can take a great deal of time to get from the Social Security disability initial claim to actually receiving benefits. If you are denied benefits, contact an experienced, knowledgeable Social Security lawyer to help you get the benefits you deserve.