Being approved for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is not a sure thing. When you are not able to work and you are turned down for Social Security benefits, you may wonder where to turn for help. Fortunately, applicants are eligible for another chance at benefits by appearing at an appeal hearing. To help you cope with your upcoming appeal, read on, and be ready.
1. After you receive your denial letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA), your first move should be to speak to a Social Security disability lawyer. These lawyers work in tandem with the SSA and can help with no upfront money needed.
2. Social Security lawyers will evaluate your case and provide you with guidance on how to proceed. With the goal of being approved for benefits at your appeal hearing, they will help you prepare for the event and stand by your stand every step of the way at the hearing.
3. Paying an approved Social Security lawyer is a breeze. Since many out-of-work applicants are not financially able to afford legal fees, the lawyer will work on your case and agree to be paid later. This is known as a contingency fee agreement. Once you are approved for benefits, the lawyer will be paid from your back pay.
4. In some cases, you may need to be examined by a doctor if you have not had recent care or you need more medical proof to back up your claim. Your new lawyer will make arrangements to access any needed medical records and make arrangements for more medical care if needed.
5. Expect the lawyer to go over the appeal procedure so you'll know what to expect. These hearings are not as formal as a court hearing but they can still be intimidating for many applicants. With a lawyer by your side, however, you will automatically feel more confident and positive.
6. Hearings are private affairs and you should avoid bringing children or others with you. Most hearings will take place in a conference room rather than a courtroom. Arrive early so you can chat with your lawyer before the hearing.
7. At the hearing, you can expect to be joined by an Administrative Law Judge and a vocational expert. This expert attends to provide the judge with information about job skills, the local job outlook, and more. That being said, these experts work for the SSA, and one of your lawyer's main functions is to challenge the expert when they are wrong.
Talk to a Social Security lawyer to find out more.
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