Many people, at least at the outset, decide that they would like to handle filing their application for benefits under the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While many people reconsider this decision after reading through the U.S. Code, Social Security manuals, and secondary sources some determined individuals still persist in handling their application without the benefit of clear guidance from a representative who is well-versed in the Social Security Administration’s procedures and decision-making processes.
The good news is that most mistakes made by a well-meaning filer can be corrected by a Social Security disability attorney. However, in most cases there is no avoiding the delay in the process caused by the filing error or insufficient filing. In some circumstances where a serious error has been made, there may be no other option than to start the process over from the beginning. If you have questions about your eligibility for SSDI or SSI or have questions about the application and required evidence, the Law Practice of Ken Kieklak can help. To schedule a free and confidential Social Security disability consultation with a Fayetteville AR disability lawyer call (479) 316-0438 or contact us online today.
#1: You Didn’t Ensure that Your Work Did Not Exceed Certain Thresholds
While it is not strictly a requirement that the taxpayer is unable to perform any work whatsoever, taxpayers who fail to understand the limits on one’s ability to work risk delaying their eligibility for disability benefits for a significant amount of time. Many dedicated workers may hesitate to stop work until fatigue, pain, and other limiting conditions become so severe that even one more day of work is impossible. While such an approach is admirable and commendable, it can leave the benefits applicant in a difficult situation.
On one hand, workers who exceed the limits on substantial gainful activity (SGA) are ineligible to receive benefits under both the SSDI and SSI programs. At the same time, bills and expenses do not cease simply because you have been injured. In some cases an experienced Social Security lawyer may be able to discount some of your earning on the basis of substantial workplace accommodations. In other cases, waiting several months before filing an application for benefits can allow your average monthly SGA to decrease to acceptable levels.
#2: You Collected Unemployment Benefits While Applying for Disability Benefits
There is a fundamental tension between receiving benefits due to unemployment and receiving benefits due to a disability. On one hand, receiving unemployment benefits means that you are currently employed but actively seeking work. However when you apply for disability benefits you are claiming that you have impairments that are so severe that you cannot work. Furthermore the impairment is expected to last for a minimum of 12 months or result in death meaning that you are unlikely to be seeking work in the near future, if at all. While Social Security Administration regulations do not explicitly prohibit an individual from receiving both types of benefits, administrative law judges have been known to consider the unemployment filing as a factor worthy of consideration. Filing for unemployment benefits isn’t always an incorrect decision, but it is not one that should be made lightly or without a full accounting of risks from an experienced Social Security attorney.
#3: You Failed to Check the Status of your Claim
Contending with a severe condition or multiple limiting conditions can affect your ability to keep on top of your paperwork and filings. One of the most preventable mistakes made by applicants for SSDI and SSI benefits is that they fail to inquire into the status of their application at any point. Failing to request a status update or otherwise remaining diligent regarding the matter can result in an applicant not realizing that action has already been taken on the application or that the SSA has requested additional information. Failure to take action on a denial can result in the period for appeals elapsing. While in some instances an attorney may be able to show good reason for the failure to appeal in a timely manner, the applicant will be required to restart the application process in most situations.
SSDI or SSD Questions?
Seeking professional guidance for SSDI and SSD filings can make the difference between a denied claim and filing multiple appeals and approval for benefits at an earlier point in the process. The Law Practice of Ken Kieklak can fight for benefits applicants who have run into difficulties with their application. To schedule a free and confidential legal consultation discussing your application for disability benefits call the Kieklak Law firm at (479) 316-0438 or contact us online.