If you are considering a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, you probably realize you can file on your own without legal representation. The Social Security Administration website allows you to file online quickly and easily. But, please don’t file hastily — SSA rejects almost 70 percent of first-time applications, mostly because of incomplete or imprecise information. If, despite your best efforts on the application, SSA denies your claim, the experienced disability lawyers of Powell & Denny, P.C. are ready to help with your appeal. Deadlines come quickly in the appeal process, so if you’re wondering when you should hire a disability lawyer to manage your appeal, you should do it immediately upon receipt of your decision letter.
At Powell & Denny, we’ve been helping applicants for SSDI win approval since 1998. In that time, we’ve seen a wide variety of claims where the problem was not with the qualifying medical condition or the claimant’s financial status. The problem was in the language of the documentation they submitted.
If your claim is denied, you can ask for a reconsideration within 60 days. At this point, it certainly helps to have an attorney’s opinion of what might have gone wrong with your initial application, so you can bolster your application with additional information and evidence before the next reviewer examines your file. We can help you compile the accurate and comprehensive information you must include to win approval, including:
By providing comprehensive information in your file when you request a reconsideration, we can possibly spare you the delays and frustration of the next levels of the appeals process.
If the reconsideration results in another denial, the stakes are raised for the next levels of appeal — and so is the technical difficulty. Preparing for a hearing before an administrative law judge, an Appeals Council review, or a lawsuit in federal district court requires specific knowledge and experience. You can improve your chances of a positive outcome by retaining an experienced disability lawyer.
If you’re holding off hiring an attorney because you think you can’t afford one, you need to understand how fees for Social Security disability appeals work. Instead of paying a retainer, you enter into a contingency fee agreement with your lawyer, who only gets paid a fee if you win your appeal. The law limits the amount the attorney can charge in fees to 25 percent of the unpaid benefits, starting from the time your claim was wrongly denied, to a maximum of $6,000. Your future benefits are 100 percent yours. The contingency fee is a cost-effective arrangement that allows our clients to pursue justice for their claims without heavy out-of-pocket expenses.
Since 1998, Powell & Denny, P.C. has helped applicants for SSDI obtain benefits. For knowledgeable assistance at every stage of the process, call 800-549-5161 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Our Birmingham office is at 1320 Alford Avenue, just off I-65, and we also meet clients in our Huntsville office, at 600 Boulevard South.