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
Hiring a Qualified Disability Lawyer in Wisconsin
Claimants with representation in Wisconsin tend to be approved in higher percentages, have a need for fewer appeals, and more favorable "dates of onset" (the date the disability is proven to have begun) which can result in higher back pay benefits.
Representation may be through a disability lawyer or a specialized non-attorney disability representative. Many non-attorney reps are former Social Security Administration Claims Specialists and Disability Examiners.
A qualified representative will have a knowledge of Social Security administrative law and procedures, especially with regard to how claims are approved through the Social Security listings and the medical vocational grid rules. A qualified and competent representative or lawyer will also be skilled in the ability to obtain the most relevant case evidence, analyze it correctly, and incorporate it as part of a winning strategy for a claim.
To learn about fees for representation, see: "How do disability lawyers get paid?"
If you are applying for Social Security Disability (SSD) or SSI benefits in Wisconsin you might be wondering if, or when you should involve a disability lawyer in your case. This, in large part, depends on you, and how comfortable you with representing yourself throughout the disability determination process.
Having an experienced disability attorney can certainly make things easier. For one thing, there are usually numerous medical records which must be gathered and submitted to the Wisconsin state disability determination services agency in order to receive a decision on your claim. Physicians are sometimes more likely to respond in a timely manner to requests for medical records when they are submitted by disability attorneys than when the request comes from their patient.
In addition, should your initial disability case be denied, your lawyer will automatically submit an appeal for reconsideration or review to the state disability agency, ensuring that the critical 60-day deadline for filing is met (if you miss this deadline your case is automatically denied and you have no choice but to start all over again with a new claim).
However, many disability lawyers will not become involved in a disability case unless both the initial case and the reconsideration appeal have already been denied. This is often because they feel that their services are most helpful at the second appeal, which involves a hearing before a federally appointed administrative law judge (ALJ).
Certainly, there can be little doubt that legal representation can mean the difference between winning and losing your case before a disability judge. Studies have shown that, while only 40 percent of disability cases in which claimants represent themselves before the ALJ are successful, more than 60 percent of disability cases in which claimants had legal representation before the judge were approved.
An attorney specializing in SSD and SSI matters is simply more knowledgeable and better prepared to present an argument for disability benefits to a judge, in a way that is both persuasive and legally sound, than a claimant who is unfamiliar with the disability determination process and the criteria that must be met to meet the social security administration’s definition of an ongoing, debilitating medical condition.
So, when should you contact a disability lawyer if you are filing a Social Security Disability case or SSI claim in Washington state?
The best answer is, really, whenever you feel it is necessary. If at any point you are feeling overwhelmed by the process or are unable to advocate strongly for yourself, do not hesitate to get a disability lawyer involved. However, if your claim and appeal has been denied by disability determination services, you should definitely see an experienced disability attorney, because appearing before an administrative judge without legal representation could really hurt your case.
What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?
Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?
How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?
Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved
What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?
What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?
Receiving a Disability Award Letter
Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability
Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI
Applying for disability in your state
Most popular topics on SSDRC.com
Social Security Disability SSI Questions
The listings, list of disabling impairments
Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?
Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials
How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?
How to apply for disability for a child or children
Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application
Filing for disability - when to file
How to apply for disability - where to apply
Qualifications for disability benefits
How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits
Qualifying for Disability - The Process
How to get disability for depression
Getting disability for fibromyalgia
SSI disability for children with ADHD
What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability
Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips
More Social Security Disability SSI Questions
Social Security Disability SSI definitions
What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?
New and featured pages on SSDRC.com
Who can help me file for disability?
These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.
Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
Permanent Social Security Disability
What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?
Who is eligible for SSI disability?
Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?
What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
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.