What to Do When Your Claim has been Denied

What to Do When Your Claim has been Denied

While Social Security is supposed to be your safety net, the fact of the matter is most claimants who apply for benefits are denied.  While you do have the right to appeal, the paperwork can be complicated and mistakes can cause your appeal to be denied as well.  So what do you do when your claim has been denied?  Let’s look at the steps you should take after your claim has been denied.

Qualifying for Social Security

Social Security is a form of disability insurance that will pay benefits if you meet their criteria.  You need to have worked long enough to qualify and you need to be medically unable to work for at least a year or your condition is terminal.  You can at any point seek legal representation to help you file your claim although the Social Security Administration will not disclose that information.

Get an Attorney as Soon as You Can

One of the biggest reasons that claims are denied is that you don’t have representation during the process.  The presence of an attorney can help make sure that you have a favorable outcome in your case.  A lawyer can help you process the paperwork properly and if your claim is denied they can help you through the appeal process.  Here is a look at the appeal process.

Most applicants only ever seek legal advice once their claims have been denied.  A disability attorney can help you with the reconsideration appeal process, but getting legal help initially would be in your best interest rather than waiting until your claim has been denied.  According to statistics from the SSA almost 85% of cases need to be appealed.  The cases that are victorious through the appeal process are usually won because the claimant sought out legal representation.

Hiring a Disability Attorney

Most disability attorneys work on a contingency basis rather than taking an upfront fee.  That means when your claim is one and you receive the back payments owed to you then 25% of that money will go to your attorney.  This is industry standard and it is far better than having your claim denied again.  The attorney’s fees will be deducted before you get paid.  This type of law is a specialty so you need an attorney who specializes in this type of law.  Your future is on the line so don’t gamble it with just any attorney get someone who has done this type of case before.

How to Find a Disability Attorney

How to Find a Disability Attorney

After going through an illness or accident that has left you without the ability to work then you have to suffer further indignities as social security or your insurance company denies your claim.  Despite having paid into these programs for years when the time comes to collect they deny you coverage.  At this point in time you are going to need the services of an attorney to help you pursue your claim.  Here is some help on how to find a disability attorney.

Find a Local Attorney

The first thing you need is an attorney that is close to you or at least in the same city.  Traveling may not be easy for you and you need a lawyer who can practice in the jurisdiction where you are taking legal action.

Practice Area

You may already know a couple of lawyers but that doesn’t make them the right lawyer for you.  The first question you need to ask a potential lawyer is what their area of practice is.  Do they specialize in disability claims?  Finding a great attorney doesn’t do you any good if they specialize in real estate law.  You want an attorney that has a track record of competently resolving cases that are similar to yours.  They understand disability law and know how to win.

Always check out an attorney’s website as well as some review sites to see what former clients say about their experience. Most attorneys will give you a free consult allowing you to decide if this is someone that you can work with.

How the Billing Works

If you are seeking legal help in getting insurance or Social Security to pay your disability claim then chances are good that you don’t have a great deal of funds set aside to pay an attorney.  It is not unusual for disability claimants to not be able to pay large retainers up front.  Talk to your attorney to find out how they bill.  Some lawyers are happy to work on a contingency basis so that their fee comes out of the settlement that you get.  This allows you to pursue your claim without any risk to yourself or to have a lot of upfront cash.

Comfort Level

When you are pursuing a disability claim that means that you will be sharing medical information along with personal details pertaining to your case.  You need to be comfortable enough with your attorney to be able to do that.  Disability claims can also take time to go through the courts, it’s best to have a working relationship that leaves you feeling confident.