The Disability Claims Process

Social Security Disability Attorney Serving New York

The process of filing a claim for Social Security Disability benefits is not necessarily straightforward, fast or simple. When you look at the fact that nearly two-thirds of all Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims filed in 2011 were denied by the Social Security Administration (SSA), you have proof that the process can be difficult to navigate. Becoming disabled does not automatically qualify a worker for disability benefits. That worker must prove that he or she has met work and disability requirements in order to be eligible for financial support.

A New York Social Security Disability attorney at Napoli Shkolnik PLLC can provide welcome counsel as you or a loved one face the process of filing an SSDI application. With more than 150 years of collective legal experience among our attorneys, and a track record that includes more than $3 billion recovered in settlements and awards since 2000, our firm is qualified and proven in this complex field. We offer experienced representation in every stage of the process:

  • Initial filing of a disability application. One of our lawyers may be able to file your application online or in person. Your application must be filled out completely and properly and it must include relevant supporting documentation and information, such as your Social Security number, proof of age, medical records, work history, tax information and more. Ensuring that all necessary information is included and is accurate can make a difference in whether your claim is denied or approved.
  • Filing for reconsideration if your claim was denied. More than two-thirds of Social Security Disability applications are denied the first time around. An attorney can file a request for reconsideration, which involves the complete review of the claim by someone other than the person who denied it the first time. This request must be filed within 60 days.
  • Administrative Law Judge hearing. The next step, if a claim is denied again upon reconsideration, is to request a hearing with an Administrative Law Judge. This hearing will give our lawyers the opportunity to present your case in person.
  • Appeals Council review. In the event that the Administrative Law Judge does not approve your claim, the next step will be to file an appeal with the Appeals Council of the Social Security Administration. The Appeals Council may decide to approve the claim, may refer the case back to the Judge or may support the Judge's decision to deny the claim.

Navigating the SSDI claim process requires time, effort and experience in order to have the best opportunity of meeting with success. It is not simply a matter of filing a claim and then receiving the benefits to which you are entitled. Our lawyers make sure our clients' claims are properly filed and then follow up. We address any potential issues as soon as they arise, using our experience to take whatever measures are in our clients' best interests. It may take anywhere from three to five months to receive a decision from the SSA on a disability claim. We strive to shorten this time period by making sure we include all pertinent information (a lack of information and relevant documents can make the process take longer). Some claims are even randomly selected for quality assurance, and if this happens you can rest assured that we have taken every step to make sure nothing was missed.

Get the level of experienced help you need through the claims process. Contact a New York Social Security Disability lawyer at our firm today.