How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay
No answer on disability case; should I call to check on it?
"I am close to age 55 and have worked since I was in high school. Uncontrolled hypertension and a history of severe back pain with multiple surgeries including removal of a disc. Applied for disability in January but no answer yet. Should I be concerned? Should I call them to check on my case, or should I get a lawyer to do it for me? Will SS respond faster or better to a lawyer?"
You should contact Social Security and check the status of your disability claim. It is always possible that Social Security has already made a decision and for one reason or another you have not received your decisional notice. Your question is difficult to answer without knowing if Social Security has been in contact with you throughout these months or if you have had to attend consultative examinations.
There are many things that may prolong the length of time it takes to get an answer. It could be as simple as that the disability examiner assigned to your disability claim has left the disability processing agency and their disability cases have been reassigned. Once reassigned, perhaps additional development may have been necessary to get current medical information (anything over ninety days old is not considered current for Social Security purposes). All disability claims need current medical information for a decision. Consultative examinations also add to the overall processing times of disability claims.
As to your question of whether or not Social Security responds quicker or better to a lawyer: having a lawyer does not, by itself, does not speed up the processing of a claim. However, it certainly does not hurt to have your representative check the status of your disability claim. As the saying goes, "the squeaky wheel gets the grease".
The best suggestion I can give you at this point is to contact Social Security and at least make sure your disability claim is still active. If a decision has been made, your appeal period is tied to the date of your decisional notice, so you need to know if your disability claim has been denied.
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Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability
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Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application
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Qualifications for disability benefits
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When Do You Get A Social Security Disability Award Letter And What Does It Say?
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Filing for disability and financial help
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These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits
Getting a disability approval
How to appeal disability denial
Disability hearing results
Helpful tips for going to Social Security Disability hearing
SSDI hearing decision
Denied Social Security Disability now what
Social Security Disability appeal status
Social Security Disability appeal attorney fees
I was denied Social Security Disability for the 2nd time
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How long does a Social Security Disability judge have to make a ruling?
The Social Security Disability Blue book
How to get an SSDI reconsideration approved?
Conditions that get approved for disability
Social Security Disability back pay status
Denied Social Security Disability appeal
What to say at a disability hearing
Filing for disability with fibromyalgia
Tips for applying for disability
For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.
The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.
To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.