Disabled man working with a lawyer in an office.

For a service that’s supposedly in place to help people who are in dire need, the process for filing to get social security benefits is unbelievably complex and frustrating. It requires a number of rounds of forms, interviews, and justifications, in addition to the various laws, rules and restrictions in place.

Very often, applicants are denied benefits for the simplest reasons and have to fight. Too many people fall prey to common myths, which leads to unfortunate outcomes. Read five common misconceptions regarding filing for SSDI that can make all the difference in the world, and how an SSI attorney can help.

The System Is There to Help You

That’s a myth that’s perpetrated by the SSA itself. Never believe that the system is there for your benefit. In fact, more often than not, the system is in place to challenge you and make sure you’re not trying to cheat and get benefits you don’t need. You need to be on top of everything you do. Call to check on the status of your claim. Make sure you send everything certified mail with return receipts, and verify everything you’re told.

Your Claim is Unique

Here’s a staggering statistic: 7 out of 10 SSDI claims are denied out of hand, and another 3 or 4 out of every 10 are denied following appeal. There’s nothing about your claim that SSDI reviewers haven’t seen before. The best way to make your claim stand out is to accurately reflect your diagnosis, your limitations, your prognosis and the effects on your daily life.

“My Doctor Said I’m Disabled – That’s Enough!”

Your doctor’s opinion isn’t enough to get you disability benefits. It’s sad, but true. While your doctor’s diagnosis matters, it also has to be supported by other facts and testing. That’s why you need to be clear and honest with all of the details of your injury and its effects.

Wait 12 Months before Filing for SSDI

This is a very common myth, that you have to wait a full year from the date of disability before filing for SSDI. The truth is, you can file the very day you are injured. The twelve-month limit comes from the length of your disability—that is, you need to be able to demonstrate that your disability will last for 12 months, minimum.

The reason for this is that the SSA doesn’t want anyone who breaks an arm to file for disability. The truth is, if you wait to apply, you could lose a significant amount of benefits because the SSA can only back pay for up to 12 months, and if you wait too long, your claim might not be reviewed or approved for several months.

Affording an SSDI Attorney

This is a big myth that leads to many people struggling without the legal help they need. Not only can you afford an SSDI attorney, it’s essential that you seek help from one. A good SSDI attorney works on contingency—we only get paid if you get benefits. If you are facing denial of your claim or have been victim to any of these myths, Dr. Bill LaTour can help. Call our offices for help today.

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