Lawyers’ Ten Tips to Win Your
Social Security Disability Case –
Our experienced Long Beach Social Security lawyers have helped thousands of clients in Long Beach, Anaheim, Los Angeles and Southern California obtain the Social Security Disability benefits that they deserve.
One of the most common questions our Social Security attorneys are asked is: “How can I win my Social Security Disability case?
In this two part article, we discuss the 10 most common reasons for being denied Social Security Disability benefits – and the steps you can take to avoid a denial and win your Social Security Case.
(Note: This article pertains to Social Security Disability – not SSI.)
Qualifying for Social Security Disability
Do Not Earn Too Much Income to Win Your Social Security Disability Case
One of the primary reasons that people are denied Social Security Disability benefits is because they earn too much money to be considered disabled.
In 2017, if a person earns more than $1,150.00/month (or $ 1,950.00/month if they are blind), they are considered to have “substantial gainful activity” (SGA) and will not be able to collect Social Security Disability.
This dollar amount is adjusted annually, and changes every year. This amount does NOT include “unearned” income – such as money from investments. Additionally, your spouse’s income is NOT counted toward the “SGA” limit.
You Must Prove Your Disability Will Last at Least 1 Year to Win Your Social Security Disability Case
In order to be eligible for Social Security Disability, your impairment must be expected to last one year or longer (and/or result in your death).
A common example of a Social Security Disability denial is for a broken bone. Because bone fractures typically will heal in less than a year, a broken bone SSDI claim is usually denied.
So it is up to you and your Social Security Disability attorney to prove – by submitting medical records and documentation – that your disability will last at least 12 months.
You Must Show You are Unable to Do “Any Full time Job in the National Economy” to Win Your Social Security Disability Case
Probably the most common reason our attorneys see Social Security Disability claims denied are because the person did not prove to the Social Security Administration that they were unable to perform “any job.”
Many people wrongly believe that all they have to show is that they cannot do their most recent or usual job. But this is not the case. For example, even if a truck driver shatters a leg and can no longer drive a truck, Social Security may still say he is employable, because he could sit at a cash register.
So it is necessary for the applicant and their attorney to prove – through medical reports, etc. – that the person’s disability is so severe that they are “unable to work at any job in the national economy on a full-time basis”.
Always Update Your Address with the SSA to Win Your Social Security Disability Case
It sounds simple, but every year many deserving applicants are denied Social Security Benefits because they move, and their correspondence from the Social Security Administration isn’t delivered.
If you move, or change your address for any reason, it is up to you to notify the Social Security of your new contact information.
Sometimes, disabled individuals move in with family members who can care for them. In other cases, an injured person may have to move to a rehab facility, or handicap accessible apartment. Whatever the reason, if Social Security contacts you and does not get a timely response to their request, your case will be dismissed.
One of the advantages to hiring an experienced Social Security Disability attorney is that you are ensured that you will never “miss” any mail or correspondence from Social Security. When you are disabled it can be difficult to keep up with all of the necessary paperwork – especially if you have had to move.
Our Social Security attorneys stay on top of your case – and any requests from the SSA – so you don’t have to.
Submit Thorough, Complete & Detailed Medical Records to Win Your Social Security Disability Case
Plain and simple, if your medical records are out-of-date, incomplete, or not thorough, your Social Security Disability claim will be denied.
Often times a busy or disorganized Doctor’s office will forget or neglect to send medical records to Social Security in a timely fashion. But no matter whose oversight it was, if the medical records aren’t there, your SSDI claim will be denied.
It is advantageous to hire an experienced Social Security Disability attorney who help you compile the necessary medical documentation and make sure that everything is submitted in a timely manner. An attorney knows what the SSA needs to approve your Social Security Disability claim – and they will follow up with your healthcare providers to make sure everything needed is submitted properly and on time.
Click Here for Part 2 of Our Lawyers Tips on How to Win Your Social Security Disability Case