Overview of Disability

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How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

SSD Mistakes to avoid

Disability for Mental

What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

Disability through SSA

SSI Disability Benefits

Disability for Children

How do I qualify for it?

Working and Disability

Disability Award Notice

Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

Disability Eligibility

SSD SSI Definitions

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SSDRC Disability Blog

Winning Social Security Disability or SSI

How severe must your condition be to be awarded Social Security Disability or SSI?
Social Security disability is a total disability program, as is SSI. Neither program will award temporary disability benefits.

How do you Win Benefits under Social Security Disability or SSI?
Part one of this discussion covers the various factors that are an element of each disability determination or decision. Part II, located lower on the page, is a distilled conversation on what you and/or your disability representative need to prove to the Social Security Administration to actually win your case.

What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits?
The answer to this question depends on which level of consideration the claim is at in the disability determination process.

What kind of cases win disability benefits?
Any disability case that involves a severe physical or mental impairment, or combination of impairments that have caused a person to be unable to work at a substantial gainful activity level for at least one full year could represent a case that will win disability benefits.

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits
On this particular page, we will drill down to the core topic: How do you prove your disability case to the Social Security Administration?

How Likely are You to Win Your Disability Case?
The likelihood of winning a disability case depends on several factors, such as--

How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What do mental treatment records need to say about your condition? Ideally, they should provide some level of detail regarding a disability claimant's ability to engage in normal daily activities.

Winning at a Social Security Disability Hearing
If you make sure that when your case comes before a judge it is presented in the best, most professional light possible, you can only increase the odds of winning at a disability hearing.

Are the Chances of Winning Disability Benefits Higher at a Social Security Hearing with a Judge?
Claimants who go to disability hearings have the opportunity to A) Review their file; and B) Add medical evidence to their file.

Preparing to win a Disability Hearing
The following list applies to both represented and non-represented claimants whose case will be heard at the administrative law judge level.

The Medical Records That Are Best For A Social Security Disability Claim
Social Security prefers that disability claims be supported by medical records from the applicant’s treating physician.

Advice to Win Social Security Disability and SSI Benefit Claims
You may wish to submit copies of your medical treatment records, as this may help expedite the processing of your disability claim. A word of caution here, make sure your medical treatment notes contain current treatment as well as past medical treatment. Social Security considers treatment within the last three months to be current.

Do I Have A Good Chance Of Winning Social Security Disability On Appeal?
The answer to this question depends upon which angle you look at it from. You have a fairly decent chance of winning Social Security disability if you appeal your disability claim to an administrative law judge hearing.

How will an attorney help me win disability benefits?
Most individuals who need to appear at a disability hearing at some point will simply not be aware of the various rules and regulations that can play a part in receiving a decision on a social security disability or SSI claim.

Why does Representation increase the win ratio at a Social Security Disability or SSI Hearing?
Why does representation result in a higher win ratio at a hearing? The answer is fairly simple. Disability hearings are similar to various types of court proceedings in which A) solid case preparation and B) a proper presentation of the relevant arguments and positions are both necessary in order to win the case.

How does a Medical Source Statement (RFC Form) help win a Social Security Disability or SSI Claim?
How does the representative or attorney obtain the statement? In the same way that medical records are obtained, by sending a written request to the claimant's treating physician.

Additional pages

Do Most People Need To See A Judge To Get Disability Benefits From Social Security?
The worst thing about having to see a judge to get disability benefits is the wait for a disability hearing.

How can I win Social Security Disability benefits?
Disability claims that are filed and become approved have certain characteristics in common. On this page, we cover them in detail.

Winning a Social Security Disability Appeal or SSI Appeal
In just about every instance, it makes more sense for a disability claimant to appeal their case rather than filing a new disability claim. This is because, each time a claim is appealed its chances of approval increase.

Disability Lawyer Success Rate - Do Lawyers Improve The Chances of Winning Social Security Disability or SSI?
Some representatives do an extraordinarily good job of winning their client's cases at the initial claim (disability application) or reconsideration appeal levels.

What Are the Chances of Winning an SSA Disability Appeal?
The chance of winning a SSA disability appeal depends greatly upon what level of appeal your disability claim is at. Roughly, thirty-five percent of initial SSA disability claims are approved, which means that sixty five percent of all individuals, who apply for Social Security disability, are denied.

Winning disability benefits in North Carolina (or any state)
This page is tailored to my own home state of North Carolina, but as the system is standardized and federal, the information can be applied to any state.

Winning Social Security Disability Benefits For Mental Disorders
Those who are awarded disability due to a mental disorder are often at a disadvantage in that their condition was not immediately diagnosed.

Does your chance of winning disability benefits at a hearing depend on the judge you get?
Disability attorneys and non-attorney disability representatives are usually well aware of which judges at a hearing office are more likely to pose a problem for a claimant's case. Some judges have a reputation for being tougher on children's disability claims while others are known to be less (or more) likely to approve a case that is based primarily on a certain condition, such as ADHD or fibromyalgia.

How Do You Win An SSI or Social Security Disability Hearing?
Be prepared to answer questions about your disabling condition or conditions, and how the limitations imposed by your condition have prevented you from performing routine daily activities including work activities.

Disability Approval Chances at the Social Security Reconsideration and Hearing Levels
Because reconsideration appeals are decided based on the exact same guidelines used to deny the initial disability application, it is unlikely that a claimant will get a different result unless he or she has new, persuasive medical information to add to the record.

Are the Chances of Winning Disability Benefits Higher at a Social Security Hearing with a Judge?
The disability hearing stage is distinctly different in that administrative law judges prefer to have available to them the opinion of the claimant's own physician.

Disability Hearings - how many are won?
The administrative law judge has the power to be more lenient in their interpretation of Social Security disability rules and guidelines while making a disability decision than the previous initial claim or reconsideration appeal levels.

How Likely Is It That A Social Security Disability Claim Will Be Won Prior To The Hearing Level?
Although the disability process can be long and full of hardships, individuals who follow the process through the administrative law judge hearing have a very good chance of winning their disability benefits.

Should you ask a Disability Lawyer About Their Win Rate and How Many Cases They get Approved?
If you are speaking with a possible representative to handle your social security disability or SSI disability claim, should you ask about their win rate? You can, but the answer would, most likely be meaningless. If the representative were to tell you that they have a 90-99 percent win ratio, this would mean nothing if it turned out that the only cases they took were those that were sure winners.

Can you win your Disability Case by Yourself?
It is certainly possible to win a social security disability or SSI disability case by yourself, without the involvement of representation. There are many individuals who have been able to accomplish this for claims that have been decided at the disability application, request for reconsideration (the first appeal), and ALJ (administrative law judge) disability hearing levels.

How to improve the chances of winning a North Carolina disability hearing
Again: Though this page was written for North Carolina, it applies to any state since the SSD and SSI system is federal. Excerpt: The opinion of the claimant's treating physician can sometimes be granted what SSA refers to as "controlling weight" on a case. And this can amount essentially to winning your case.

More on the following topics here: Winning Disability Benefits from Social Security Part II

  • What types of information is Social Security Disability looking for?
  • What Percentage Of Social Security Disability or SSI Cases Does A Judge Deny?
  • What kind of cases win disability benefits?
  • Can you win your Disability Case by Yourself?
  • How will an attorney help me win disability benefits?
  • Winning a Social Security Disability Appeal or SSI Appeal
  • Do Most People Need To See A Judge To Get Disability Benefits From Social Security?
  • Why does Representation increase the win ratio at a Social Security Disability or SSI Hearing?
  • Why Is It Hard to be Found Disabled for Social Security Disability or SSI for Seizures?

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

    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 answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

    Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
    How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
    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?
    How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
    How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
    Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
    Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria