Overview of Disability

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Disability attorneys can make a difference on a case, but sometimes can hinder a case

You would think that having an attorney to file your disability application for you would be a good thing, in that it would help your claim to move more quickly through the system. However, while it is almost always beneficial to have a disability lawyer represent your case in the latter stages of the disability determination process (the reconsideration appeal or the final appeal before an administrative judge), lawyers, in a few limited instances, can actually prove to be more of a hindrance at the initial filing stage.


1. Using a Lawyer for an SSDI Disability Case
2. Getting a Social Security Disability Attorney

In fact, some disability attorneys actually delay a decision in their clients’ cases because they fail to understand one crucial thing about social security workers--—they have an enormous, almost impossible caseload, so any claim that requires them to do extra work will be put to the side until...well, for as long as possible.

Attorneys may try to help their clients file for disability by sending in a paper disability application to SSA, sometimes hand-written, which must first be deciphered and then typed into the system by the unfortunate claims representative (CR) that is assigned the claim. While this seems like an easy task, it is just one more thing that must be fit into a packed daily appointment schedule, not to mention walk-in applicants.

Any disability lawyer that wants to help a client get a claim processed as quickly as possible should schedule an in-person interview for that client with a social security CR (claims rep). The attorney should also be sure to fill out an online disability report for the client (form SSA-3368).

Disability lawyers assisting clients in filing for disability should also be sure to send in all of the other paperwork associated with their clients’ disability claim, including the SSA-827 medical release forms, and form SSA-1696, which notifies social security who has been appointed as the claimant’s representative. And of course, the fee agreement.

In this way, a disability attorneys can be sure that their involvement is truly helpful, and at the very least is not going to frustrate an already overworked SSA employee, who will then put the application on the bottom of the heap of applications already waiting to be processed.

In short, paper applications are always given less priority than scheduled appointments and even walk-in clients. So don't let your attorney send in a paper application. If your disability attorney does this, he or she is probably not aware that, by doing so, your claim is being disadvantaged simply will sit there for quite a while before it is even entered into the system.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

Social Security Disability Paperwork Follow Up Call
Denied disability, can a Congressman help me?
Can you receive Medicaid if your SSI disability is stopped?
The amount of back pay that you receive
Appealing a denial of Social Security Disability or SSI
How long does your condition have to last to qualify for disability?
What SSA means by disabled and disability
If You Get Social Security Disability or SSI, Will Your Dependents Get A Check?
Filing for disability with IBS, irritable bowel syndrome
What Income Will Affect Your Disability Benefits? (Workers Compensation, Wages etc)
Social Security Disability - What is considered earned income versus unearned income?
How to file for disability, tips to start
How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
How Long Does It Take To Get Disability Benefits When You First File?
Hashimoto's Disease and Filing for Disability

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

What mental problems qualify for disability?
SSI disability status
How to prove you qualify for disability
Qualifying for disability eligibility requirements
How Does Social Security Decide If You Are Disabled
How much does disability pay?
Factors involved in Winning SSDI or SSI Claims
Applying for disability with Degenerative Disc Disease
How long to get a Social Security decision letter?
What Does Social Security Consider To Be a Disability?
The amount of back pay that you receive
Social Security medical disability determination process
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How long can you receive SSI or Social Security disability benefits?
How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
How Long Does It Take To Get Disability Benefits When You First File?
Can you work if you get SSI disability?
Social Security Disability attorney fees
Am I eligible to receive disability benefits?
What are the non medical requirements for disability
How to get SSI
Approved for disability benefits
SSD SSI disability hearing decision