Social Security Disability Resource Center
What is the criteria for disability? |
Will I Qualify For Disability in NC? |
How long does disability take in NC? |
Should I get a disability representative or lawyer in North Carolina?
Note: The SSDI, SSI disability system is federal and nationally standardized, though there are state differences in approval rates, wait times, the number of appeals available--as of the time of this writing--and even the name given to the stage disability agency (DDS, or the Bureau or Division of Disability Determination). Now, to answer the question...
If you obtain a disability representative in North Carolina at the application level, or at the reconsideration appeal level, the representative may be able to gauge the strength of your case and your chances of winning.
At the application level, your representative may get in touch with the disability examiner assigned to your case, either to clarify certain aspects of your medical records, or help focus them on certain aspects of your condition, I.e. point out your functional limitations.
At the reconsideration appeal level, your NC representative may do this as well, but also review how the initial claim decision was made, and whether or not any evidence was improperly considered, or if any evidence that should have been obtained was not obtained, or was missing from your case file.
If your case goes to the hearing level, where the decision will be made by a federal administrative law judge (most cases that are denied in NC at the initial level need to go to a hearing in order for benefits to be won), your representative, should you choose to obtain representation (and this is usually advised at a hearing) will review your entire case file to learn the following:
1. Why was the case denied?
2. Did Social Security fail to obtain all of your medical records, especially records that might have been especially helpful in proving that your case fits the definition of disability used by SSA?
3. Did the disability examiner and his medical consultant (Medical doctor attached to the examiner's claim processing unit) properly assess the claimant's functional capacity, otherwise known as there RFC, or residual functional capacity (defined as what the person can still do despite their condition)?
4. Did the disability examiner improperly categorize one of the jobs worked by the claimant in the past? Did the examiner mistakenly conclude that the claimant had a higher probability of finding some type of "other work" than was actually the case?
Note: Many disability cases in North Carolina are denied because Social Security, while it may conclude that a person cannot go back to a past job, will still decide that the person has enough education and skills to do some type of other work.
Therefore, consideration of the claimant's work history is vital and the outcome of the case may hinge completely on this.
This is one area in which representation of a disability claim may provide the greatest benefit. In fact, it is very common for administrative law judges at disability hearings to have vocational experts, or VEs, appear at the hearing to provide expert testimony on the question of whether or not the claimant can go back to a past job, or whether they have the ability to switch to some type of work...that they have never done before.
A disability representative's job in such cases will be to interact with the vocational expert and present the case in such a way that the judge will conclude that a) the claimant no longer has the ability to go back to a former job and b) that the claimant does not possess the necessary skills and training to switch to some type of other work, when taking into consideration their age, education, and current level of functional capacity.
As to whether or not you should get a disability lawyer or a non-attorney disability representative in North Carolina, the answer is simply that you should get a representative who is familiar with the following: how case decisions are actually made, how to analyze prior decisions, how to spot errors and weaknesses in the case file, what type of evidence is needed to prove a case satisfies the Social Security definition of disability, and how to establish that a case should be approved based on the rules and regulations of the system.
Whether a prospective representative is a lawyer, or a non-attorney advocate who has taken and passed the federal examination is really not the issue. The representative that is chosen should simply be an individual who fits the criteria listed above.
Such individuals typically have years of involvement with the Social Security Disability and SSI system (such as being a former disability examiner) and are therefore qualified to successfully manage and lead cases to an approval.
Filing for NC disability benefits
Applying for Disability in North Carolina - How to apply, qualify, and meet filing requirements
Applying for NC disability benefits
More about filing for disability benefits in North Carolina
How to claim disability benefits in North Carolina
What happens on a disability application in North Carolina?
How long will it take to receive NC disability benefits if your application is approved?
Basic questions about disability benefits in North Carolina
How much can you receive in disability backpay in North Carolina?
How far back do you get disability benefits in North Carolina?
Can You Work and Collect Social Security Disability in North Carolina?
How to Get the Status on Your Social Security Disability Claim in North Carolina
How do I get help to win my disability claim in North Carolina?
The disability process in North Carolina
What condition or conditions qualifies for disability in North Carolina?
How long does it take to get through the disability system in North Carolina?
Is it hard to get disability benefits in North Carolina?
What are my chances of being approved for disability benefits in North Carolina?
How long does it take to receive North Carolina disability benefits after you are approved?
Disability determination services in North Carolina
Disability decisions in North Carolina
How long does it take for the disability decision in North Carolina?
How does the North Carolina Social Security Disability determination process work?
Getting disability benefits in North Carolina
Getting denied for disability in North Carolina and filing appeals
What does getting disability benefits in North Carolina involve?
How to get on disability in North Carolina
NC Disability requirements and qualifications
Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in North Carolina?
What is the criteria for disability benefits in North Carolina?
What are the disability qualifications in North Carolina?
Proving the requirements for disability in North Carolina
How do you meet the Disability qualifications in North Carolina?
SSI and Social Security Disability requirements in North Carolina
How do I Know If I Qualify For Disability in North Carolina?
Winning Disability benefits in NC
How do I win disability benefits in North Carolina?
Improving your chances of getting disability in North Carolina
How to improve the chances of winning a North Carolina disability hearing
Will an attorney or representative help me win North Carolina disability benefits?
Winning disability benefits in North Carolina
Mental Disability benefits in NC
Receiving disability for a mental condition in North Carolina
How do you receive benefits for a mental disability in North Carolina?
Getting approved for mental disability benefits in North Carolina
Disability awards and award notices in North Carolina
Getting a Social Security Disability award in North Carolina
The Social Security Disability award notice process in North Carolina
What affects how much time it takes to get a disability award in North Carolina?
Disability representation in North Carolina
Should I get a disability representative or lawyer in North Carolina?
Who can provide disability representation in North Carolina?
Hiring a Qualified Disability Lawyer in North Carolina
How do Disability Lawyers in North Carolina get paid their fees?
Denied for disability in North Carolina, should I get an attorney or representative?
Disability attorney fees in NC - paying your lawyer or representative
How does a disability lawyer or representative get paid in North Carolina?
How much does the fee cost for a disability attorney in North Carolina?
Do you pay your disability lawyer in North Carolina or does Social Security pay the fee?
Will your North Carolina disability lawyer charge you upfront for taking your case?
Will your NC disability attorney charge you for any expenses other than the main fee?
NC disability hearings
What kind of decision will you get at a disability hearing in North Carolina?
NC disability hearing - how long for a decision?
Do you have to go to a Social Security hearing in North Carolina to get approved for disability?
The disability hearing in North Carolina- things to keep in mind
How do you prepare for a disability hearing in North Carolina?