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Less Than 34% Awarded

In 2012, less than 34% of all claims for benefits were awarded.

Are You Eligible?

Are you unable to work because of a medical condition or injury?

What Does It Cost You?

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Social Security Disability Overview

Social security disability lawyersYou may be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits if you are no longer able to work as a result of an injury or other medical condition. The most common reason someone is approved for Disability benefits is if their injury or disabling medical condition lasts or is expected to last for one year or longer.

Submitting a claim comes with timetables that must be obeyed in order to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. Our respected social security attorneys are here to get you the money you and your family deserve.

Who Qualifies?

A disabled child may also qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. The child must have a physical or mental condition that seriously limits his or her activities that has lasted for, or is expected to last for at least 1 year. A claim for benefits must be filed with the government, and accompanied by both verbal and written evidence proving the nature and extent of the disability.

There are several types of Social Security benefits offered by the Social Security Administration, that includes:

  • Retirement Benefits
  • Survivor Benefits
  • Disability Insurance Benefits
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Each one of these benefits includes specific forms that need to be filled out in order to properly qualify for compensation. In addition, there are other financial and health care benefits that are offered through Social Security.

*Please Note: The firm does not handle supplemental security income claims.

Steps to Submit a Claim

Initial Application

The first step to be awarded SSD benefits is to file a claim by completing a Social Security application with the Social Security Administration (SSA).

You can file an application in a number of ways:

  • In person at your local Social Security office
  • Over the phone, toll-free at 1-800-772-1213
  • On their website at

After filing an application, the SSA will turn your application over to your state’s Division of Disability Determination Services (DDS). This state agency is designed to determine whether or not a person is disabled for purposed of receiving government benefits.

You will then receive questionnaires about your medical condition and how it affects you on a daily basis. In addition, you will also be asked to complete forms regarding your work history.

The next step to qualify for Social Security benefits could be to attend appointments with your physicians or psychologists, ordered by the DDS. They will also gather your medical records and may even talk to your friends and family about your limitations.

Once your state’s DDS has gathered and evaluated all of the aforementioned information, they will then make a decision on whether or not you are entitled to benefits. This decision will be received in the mail, and, if approved, your benefits will begin shortly.

How to Appeal a Denied Claim

The Appeal Process

The appeal process can be a complicated and exhausting legal process that is best handled by an experienced Social Security Disability law firm. Our team has the expertise necessary to help get you the disability benefits you rightfully deserve, contact us today.

In some states, the first step to appealing a denied claim is to file a Request for Reconsideration with the Social Security Administration. One cannot attend a hearing unless this step has been completed.

This request for Reconsideration will send your claim through the same process it went through during your initial application, however, a different group of people look at your claim and makes a decision. Around 10% of applications at this level are actually approved.

Request for a Hearing: If your claim is denied at the initial level (i.e. NY), or if you live in a state that require a Request for Reconsideration, and you have been denied at the Reconsideration stage, you now have the ability to request a hearing in front of an administrative law judge. The judge will evaluate all the evidence in your case and make a new decision. You will have the opportunity to tell the judge in person about your limitations and how these limitations affect you on a daily basis. The judge may ask expert medical and vocational witnesses to testify about your limitations. You will also have the opportunity to have witnesses testify on your behalf if necessary. The judge will issue a decision in writing after your hearing. Many cases that are denied in the earlier stages are approved at the hearing level.

Appeals Council and Beyond: If your claim is denied by the administrative law judge, your case is NOT over. You have the opportunity to appeal your case to the Social Security Administration’s Appeals Council. Although you will not be entitled to a hearing, you can ask the Appeals Council approve your case or give you a new hearing based on the fact that the administrative law judge made a mistake. If the Appeals Council denies your case, you may have the option to sue the Social Security Administration in federal court for a reversal of the denial or a new hearing.

If your claim is denied at the hearing level or at the Appeals Council, you may also have the option of filing a new claim. There are many factors that go into making the correct decision for your case and we strongly recommend discussing your options with an experienced Social Security Disability attorney.

How The Heavy Hitters Can Help

Applying for social security disability benefits can be a long process that requires many forms. It is important to understand how to properly file a claim with the federal government, and what to do if your claim was denied. Our team of social security disability lawyers at Martin, Harding & Mazzotti, LLP® wants to help guide you through the strict process to defend your rights and get you the money you deserve for your disability.

Contact us today by using the form on the right or by calling us anytime, toll-free at 1800LAW1010 (1-800-529-1010).