While the Social Security Administration denies most first-time applications for disability benefits, it is important to remember that there are some steps you can take during the application process that can help your claim.
DO: Tell Your Doctor Everything
Since having extensive medical evidence is one of the most crucial pieces of a successful Social Security Disability claim, you need to make sure you accurately describe your disability to your doctor. Tell him or her every symptom, every side effect and every health problem you are experiencing. They could be linked to your disability. Don’t suffer in silence because you think something like depression or anxiety isn’t relevant to your case.
Take extensive notes of what you are going through and share them with your doctor. Make note of loss of appetite, chronic fatigue, pain and an inability to perform basic functions like sitting, standing or walking. These could all be important.
DON’T: Exaggerate Or Misrepresent Your Symptoms In Your Application
Work with your doctor to get a proper diagnosis of your case and provide you with plenty of documentation that describes your disability. Do not exaggerate because you think it will help your case. If the SSA thinks you are lying on your application, it could hurt an appeal.
DO: Follow Your Doctor’s Instructions
It is important to prove that you are doing everything possible to return to health and get back to work. If you follow your doctor’s recommendations for medication and treatment and you still cannot get back to work, then you will have a much stronger claim. If you don’t follow your doctor’s orders and you assume that a diagnosis is enough, the SSA will likely deny your claim.
DON’T: Wait 12 Months To Apply
Many people wait 12 months to apply because they know to qualify for disability that they must be out of work for at least a year. While this is true, you can apply much sooner if you know that your condition will ultimately keep you out of work for more than a year.
If you wait 12 months to apply, are denied and then go through the appeals process, that is a lot of time passing by where you could already be receiving the benefits you need to get by.
DO: Call Our Attorneys As Soon As Possible If Your Application Is Denied
In most cases, you only have 60 days to appeal a claim denial. Our attorneys will review your initial application and the SSA’s reasons for the denial to help you determine how to proceed. Do not panic. We can protect your rights and guide you through the process to put you in the best position to receive an approval.