Social Security disability (SSD) benefits provide a desperately needed source of financial support to those who cannot work due to an injury, illness, or medical impairment. According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), 9.5 million people across the country are currently receiving disability benefits through either SSDI or SSI. That being said, getting a Social Security disability claim paid can be challenging. In this article, our Arizona Social Security disability lawyer highlights four of the most common mistakes that you need to avoid when applying for SSD benefits.
Mistake #1: Not Knowing the Difference Between SSDI and SSI
Most people are aware that Social Security is the primary federal disability program. However, there are many people who do not know that SSD benefits are actually paid out across two separate government programs: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). SSDI is based on disability status and work history, whereas SSI is based on disability status and financial need. Make sure you apply for the right program for your situation.
Mistake #2: Failure to Support Your Claim With Complete & Accurate Medical Records
All successful Social Security disability claims are built on a foundation of comprehensive medical evidence. Without medical documentation, you will not be in a position to get your benefits. As the applicant, it is your responsibility to prove your medical eligibility through complete, accurate, and up-to-date medical records. Do not miss out on your benefits because of missing records.
Mistake #3: Waiting Too Long to File for Benefits
There is a five-month waiting period from your onset date for most SSDI or SSI claims. You do not want to miss out on the financial support that is due to you under the law. Waiting too long to file for your SSD benefits is a major mistake. Be proactive. The SSA strongly recommends that people file for benefits as soon as they become eligible.
Mistake #4: Assuming that a Social Security Disability Denial Means You are Out of Options
Did you know that more than two-thirds of Social Security disability applications are initially denied? Getting your SSD benefits can sometimes prove to be challenging. A denial letter from the SSA is stressful and frustrating. It is important to understand that you still have legal options available. It is your right to file an appeal. The first-level appeal—a request for reconsideration—should be submitted within 60 days. An experienced Arizona Social Security disability lawyer can help you prepare a well-supported appeal.
Contact Our Arizona Social Security Disability Attorney for Help
At Snow, Carpio & Weekley, PLC, our Arizona Social Security disability lawyers have the experience that you can trust. If you are applying for SSD benefits or appealing an SSD denial, we are more than ready to protect your rights and interests. Contact us today to arrange a free, confidential consultation. With law offices in Phoenix, Tucson, Flagstaff, Yuma, and Lake Havasu, we are well-positioned to handle SSDI and SSI claims all over Arizona.