SSDI – Social Security Disability Insurance

You just experienced a terrible on the job accident and your leg had to amputated. You are unable to work and you file a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits (SSDI) You wait about 4 months and receive an answer saying that your claim was denied. That happens to 60% of cases reviewed by the agency. You appeal or request a hearing. You wait another several months. You appear before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) who hears your case. You wait another few months and get your answer. You are denied your claim. 80% of claims are rejected on appeal.

Why did this happen? There could be any number or reasons. The primary rules for getting SSDI are that you must have worked at job paying Social Security for 5 out of the past 10 years and have a permanent condition that prevents you from working and is expected to last 12 months. During that time you cannot earn more than $1000 per month.

You check you work history and find that you meet these qualifications. Why then did you not get your benefits? Most often it is sloppy paperwork or inaccurate information that is at the root of your problem. Your work history must accurate and detailed. Your medical history is even more complicated.

Did you know that the Social Security Administration (SSA) has a Blue Book. It lists almost every conceivable condition that would warrant SSDI payments. Here again your physician must adhere to the guidelines in this book. If your doctor didn’t follow the book precisely, it could have been cause for denial.

Now you waited nearly a year and still have no benefits. During this time you must also prove that you are getting medical care on a regular basis for your disability.

So the odds are stacked against you. What should you have done? You should have hired an attorney advocate to represent you. Attorney advocates are specialists in SSDI cases. They are not paid up front. They receive payment only upon successful adjudication of your claim. They can collect 25% of your first payment or $6000 whichever is less and are paid directly by SSA. The balance is paid to the claimant via direct deposit. Keep in mind that claims may take several months, even years to settle, with payments retroactive to the original date of the claim. This is one reason why attorney fees are regulated.