Social Security Disability (SSD) is a government program that provides monetary benefits to those who are disabled from working in Statesboro. However, many applicants do not get approved for benefits – even if they actually qualify.
To get approved, you must meet the criteria and provide sufficient information to show that you qualify. This is difficult to do alone, but a Statesboro Social Security Disability lawyer can help.
At John Foy & Associates, our lawyers can help you whether you are wanting to send an application or need to appeal a denial. We know what is required to get approved for SSD benefits, including what it takes to improve an application.
How Much does It Cost to Hire an SSD Lawyer?
With the right Social Security Disability lawyer in Statesboro, you’ll pay nothing up front. That’s because many SSD attorneys take contingency fees, which means their payment comes as a portion of your initial compensation. You won’t have any fees to pay out of your own pocket.
The actual amount that your lawyer makes from your SSD case will depend on the details of your individual situation. Georgia law caps lawyers from making more than $6,000 or 25% of your past-due benefits, whichever is less. These only come out of your first payout–anything you make after that is all yours.
When you meet with your Statesboro SSD attorney, they will go over your case with you to tell you how much you might expect from your benefits, as well as how much your Social Security Disability lawyer will charge. They’ll come to an agreement with you and then get to work to make sure you have enough to support yourself and your family.
Get the strong arm
Can You Win Social Security Disability without a Lawyer?
Yes, technically, you can win a disability case without a lawyer by your side. The Social Security Administration (SSA) doesn’t require you to have an attorney, and you can file all of the materials yourself. However, having a lawyer for your disability claim significantly increases your chances of success.
You may be tempted to try to brave the process alone to save money. While it’s true that this would keep you from any contingency fees, think about how much more money you could be able to get from your claim when a lawyer is on the case. Legal help could make the difference between comprehensive benefits and no compensation at all.
If your initial claim has been denied, then that’s even more reason to get in contact with a Social Security Disability attorney in Statesboro. A lawyer will know how to deal with the appeal process and what the SSA will want to see from your application. If you’re denied, then you won’t have to pay your attorney anything.
Four Reasons the SSA Denies Social Security Disability Benefits
Many individuals with disabling conditions send their claim sure they qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, only to get a denial and wonder what went wrong. When you contact an SSD lawyer in Statesboro, they will evaluate your claim and determine areas that may have led to your denial.
Here are some of the most common reasons the Social Security Administration denies SSD applications.
1. The Applicant’s Income Was Too High
To qualify for SSD benefits, you must have a total disability. This means you must be unable to engage in Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA). If you’re earning more than a certain amount of money each month, it’s considered SGA.
The amount for SGA varies each year. In 2020, the monthly SGA amount is $1,260 for non-blind applicants and $2,110 for statutorily blind applicants. If you’re earning more than this amount of money per money, you cannot qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.
There is one exception. If you become eligible for SSD benefits and then try to return to work, the SSA will allow a trial work period (TWP) where you can earn income and still get benefits.
2. There Was Not Enough Evidence of Your Condition
Even if you have a truly disabling condition that prevents you from working, you may get denied benefits if there is not enough evidence to demonstrate your disability. This is an extremely common reason for applicants to get denied benefits.
You will need to provide information from your doctor, including your diagnosis, medical treatments you have received, prescription medication information, and more. It usually takes the eye of an experienced Social Security Disability lawyer to make sure the correct information is provided. We offer free consultations, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with an attorney.
3. Treatments Were Not Being Followed
If the SSA can see that you were not following the treatments recommended or prescribed by your doctor, you may be denied benefits. This is why it’s so vital to keep up with all treatment dates and doctor instructions after your disability has been diagnosed.
4. Your Previous Application Was Denied – and You Started a New One
Many applicants are tempted to start an entirely new application after the SSA denies their previous application. However, this is a bad idea. It’s actually best to appeal your current application if you get denied.
Starting a new application can be detrimental to your chance at approval. If the SSA can see that you were already denied benefits and started a new application, they will likely deny your new application right away.
If you were denied benefits, contact an SSD lawyer immediately. They can make sure you follow the best course of action going forward.
What to Do If Your Social Security Disability Application Gets Denied
If the SSA denies your application, you have the right to file for an appeal. In fact, we highly recommend going through the appeals process in most situations. To successfully appeal your claim denial, you will need to fully understand why your application was denied. Simply resubmitting the same information will not help.
There are four levels to a Social Security Disability claim appeal:
- The reconsideration
- An administrative law judge hearing
- An Appeals Council review
- The Federal Court review
You typically have 60 days from the date you receive your denial notice to ask for an appeal. It’s best to contact an experienced SSD lawyer right away so they can help you get started on your denial. The SSA will give an explanation of why they denied your benefits, so you and your lawyer will have an idea of where your application needs to be improved.
If the SSA denied your disability claim for medical reasons, you can go online a request your appeal. The SSA will start a reconsideration, which is a total review of your case by a person who was not involved in the first review process.
During reconsideration, the original claim will be considered along with any new information you provide.
Administrative Law Judge Hearing
An administrative law judge (ALJ) who played no part in the first review or the reconsideration of your claim will run the hearing. You can request this hearing online if you did not agree with the decision made during the reconsideration.
Appeals Council Review
If the ALJ dismissed your case, the Appeals Council will look at your claim if you request a review. However, if the Council believes the hearing decision was valid, they might deny your request. If they do look at your case, the Council will either send it back to an ALJ or review it themselves.
Federal Court Review
Finally, if you do not agree with the Appeals Council’s determination or they do not review your case, your next step would be to file a lawsuit in federal district court.
Talk to a Social Security Disability Attorney in Statesboro for Free Today
The Statesboro Social Security Disability lawyers at John Foy & Associates can look at the details of your Social Security Disability claim and give you the best chance at approval. We have been doing for countless individuals over the past 20 plus years.
To get started with a FREE consultation, call us or contact us online today.