Your disability doesn’t just make it difficult to do everyday tasks – it also makes it hard to make enough money to support yourself. Thankfully, there are programs put in place like Social Security Disability Insurance to help you out financially, but applying for benefits can be needlessly complicated.
With the help of our personal injury lawyers in Doraville at John Foy & Associates, you stand a better chance of getting the compensation you need to continue to pay for groceries and housing. You’ve paid into Social Security for years, so you should be able to reap the benefits.
How Social Security Disability Insurance Works
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a program meant to help support people who cannot work due to a disability or debilitating medical condition. Not just anyone can apply, though; you need to have worked at least five out of the last ten years and your condition must last at least 12 months or result in death.
The payment for SSDI comes from funds that you have already paid to the Social Security Administration (SSA). Every paycheck you receive has a Social Security tax taken out of it at a rate of 6.2% of your total earnings. When you need SSDI, your benefits are decided on how much you were earning before your disability took you out of work.
To be eligible for benefits, you need to meet the SSA’s threshold for disability, which can often be fairly strict. You have to be “unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity” because of a “physical or mental impairment,” according to 42 U.S. Code § 423(d)(1).
It can be difficult to convince the SSA that your condition qualifies as a disability and makes you eligible for SSDI benefits. You’ll need documentation and diagnoses that show exactly why you cannot work and why you deserve help supporting yourself.
Get the strong arm
Is It Easier to Get SSDI With a Lawyer?
Yes, in most cases a lawyer’s help makes it significantly easier to get SSDI benefits. An attorney can make sure you have all the materials you need and assure all your forms are correctly filed. In fact, studies have shown that having a lawyer helping you with your application increases your chances of approval by two to three times.
If your initial claim has been denied, an attorney could be your only way to appeal the decision. A denied application is not the end of the road, but getting the SSA to change its mind can be difficult. The SSDI appeals process is perhaps the most difficult part of applying for Social Security benefits.
There are four levels of appeal, which the SSA will most likely recommend to you in their denial letter:
- Hearing by an administrative law judge
- Review by the appeals council
- Federal Court review
Any of these will require a revision of your application to find new evidence, as well as negotiation skills and a solid theory for your case. You can do these on your own, but a Doraville Social Security Disability attorney will know what to look for and how to negotiate for benefits.
How a Social Security Disability Lawyer in Doraville Can Help You
When you hire a Doraville Social Security Disability attorney, you’re getting someone on your side who can help with your claim from the initial application to the hearing level, if that is even necessary. This is most likely your first experience with an SSDI claim. Chances are, your lawyer has handled numerous claims.
When they’re working on your claim, an SSDI lawyer can:
- Help you decide when your “onset date,” meaning the day your disability started, was
- Gather all the materials and documentation you need for your application
- Help you pick out an argument that the SSA will find convincing
- Draft a brief for your hearing
- Prepare you for questions that the judge will ask you during your appeal
You should not have to handle your claim alone. A Social Security Disability lawyer can take some of the burden off your shoulders and increase your chances of getting benefits.
How Much does an SSDI Attorney Cost in Georgia?
Here’s the thing: hiring an SSDI attorney will cost you nothing up front. That’s because all our lawyers work on contingency, meaning they only get paid once you get results. Plus, our fees come out of a portion of your initial payout, so you don’t have to worry about your attorney charging more than you actually receive.
Georgia law caps lawyers’ contingency fees at $6,000 or one-fourth (25%) of your past-due benefits, whichever ends up being less. Your lawyer will never charge anything out of your recurring payments. That way, your attorney gets the payment they deserve while you are still able to support yourself.
To find out how much you may have to pay for an attorney, you can get a free consultation with a member of our team. One of our lawyers will assess your case and tell you how much you may be able to make, as well as how much their services will cost.
Talk to a Social Security Disability Attorney in Doraville for Free
People who can’t work because of their disability or other medical condition shouldn’t be disqualified from making enough money to support themselves. The SSDI application process can be needlessly complicated, though, and can result in an unfair denial. The Doraville Social Security Disability lawyers at John Foy & Associates want to help.
Call us or contact us online for your FREE initial consultation with an SSDI attorney. Our team in Doraville is on call to talk to you 24/7.