Last updated 6 months ago
Have you recently been denied Social Security Disability benefits? You’re not alone; in fact, as many as 70% of all claims are denied on the first application. While an experienced Social Security lawyer can help you file for benefits and appeal a denial, it is still important to educate yourself on the common reasons why claims are denied.
Not Meeting Qualifications
Many individuals are denied benefits because they do not meet the SSA’s definition of disabled. According to the Social Security Administration, you are considered disabled if you are unable to work at your old job, you cannot adjust to different working conditions, and your condition is expected to last for at least one year or result in death. You may also be denied benefits if you do not meet the earnings requirements for disability benefits. You must meet two different earnings tests in order to obtain benefits—including a recent work test based on your age and the age at which you became disabled, and a duration test to demonstrate that you worked long enough to earn Social Security.
Insufficient Medical Documentation
Another reason that claims for Social Security Disability are often denied is lack of medical documentation. As with other types of disability benefits, you must submit medical documentation to support your claim—including any records discussing diagnostic tests, medications, treatments, and your prognosis.
Sometimes even the smallest error can lead to a denial. For example, some individuals find themselves denied SSDI benefits because they made a mathematical error when calculating their income, transposed numbers on the application itself, or failed to meet the application deadline.
For more information on why your claim for Social Security Disability Insurance was denied, or to initiate the appeals process, contact the Social Security attorney Todd M. Berk, Esq. Call us at (215) 687-4432 or contact us online to get started.
Last updated 6 months ago
Social Security disability paperwork may seem simple enough to figure out. However, this does not mean that you should represent yourself and forgo hiring an attorney for any legal proceedings having to do with your claim. Doing so may result in a smaller judgment or even a possible denial of compensation. Here is how underrepresentation can hurt your chances of having your Social Security disability claim approved:
If you are hurt and unable to work, the Social Security Administration needs to understand the severity of your injuries. If you represent yourself, you may not have all of the necessary paperwork handy when you turn in your forms. A lawyer can track down medical bills, employment records, and other evidence to ensure that you paint the most complete picture possible. In addition, your attorney will ensure that your paperwork contains all appropriate details. Your lawyer can also contact expert witnesses and other medical professionals who can help the Social Security judge fully understand your claim.
Lack of an Appeal
One of the main reasons why you should hire a lawyer with experience in Social Security disability law is that he or she will be able to help you file an appeal. If your initial request for disability benefits is denied by the judge, you may file a timely appeal of your claim to be heard by another magistrate. An attorney will ensure that your claim is filed within the appropriate time frame and contains up-to-date legal research to support your unique disability situation. Going without a lawyer may mean that an initial denial is your only chance to ask for compensation.
Do not fall into the trap of representing yourself in Social Security disability proceedings. Pennsylvania attorney Todd M. Berk, Esq. has decades of experience helping Philadelphia-area residents receive just compensation for their pain and injuries. Call our office at (215) 687-4432 to schedule a consultation to discuss how to get your disability claim approved.
The materials available at this website are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use and access to this website or any of the links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship. The opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the firm or any individual attorney.
Last updated 6 months ago
The Social Security Administration is more overburdened than ever. It is understaffed and feeling the financial burden of sequestration. For disabled Americans looking for assistance, this means that the rate of rejections and pace of appeals will be slower than ever.
Hiring an attorney can help increase the chances that the first review of your file yields a positive response. A lawyer with experience in this area knows exactly what evidence and paperwork the agency examiner needs. Your lawyer can ensure that you meet and exceed the burden of proof necessary when filing your claim. This can help you receive a positive answer quicker and avoid the lengthy appeals process down the line.
When you submit a claim to the Social Security Administration, you must operate on their timetable and provide all necessary documents. This is where an experienced attorney can help. Todd M. Berk, Esq. is a lawyer serving the Chester, Reading, Norristown, and Philadelphia areas. If you want help with an SSDI or SSI claim, call our office today at (215) 687-4432.
Last updated 7 months ago
When it comes to federal government benefits, many Americans have difficulty understanding the alphabet soup of acronyms describing different assistance programs. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are two long-running initiatives designed to help those in need. This is an overview of the biggest differences between SSDI and SSI:
Social Security Disability Insurance
If a worker is disabled or blinded, he or she is eligible to apply for SSDI benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). This program is funded by Social Security taxes paid by all U.S. workers, and is meant to provide financial assistance to those who are severely hurt as a result of an accident. SSDI also allows beneficiaries to receive Medicare coverage after remaining on the program for at least two years. Unfortunately, the SSA suffers serious claim backlogs and frequently denies legitimate claims. In this instance, an attorney can help you file an appeal and argue your case in court.
Supplemental Security Income
An individual seeking to receive SSI must meet higher qualifications to maintain eligibility. For instance, not only must a petitioner be either disabled or blind, but he or she must also be a U.S. citizen with limited income who currently resides in the United States. SSI is different than SSDI because this program was created to help households with lower income. Furthermore, participation in SSI does not disqualify beneficiaries from receiving assistance from the general Social Security program. Signing up for SSI automatically sends applicant information over to Social Security for processing and benefit dispersal.
Todd M. Berk, Esq. is a Philadelphia-area attorney with 33 years of experience. If your claim was improperly denied, our office can help. Waiting too long to seek a legal opinion can void your initial claim, which is why we recommend acting as soon as possible. Our team offers free initial consultations to all first-time clients; call us today at (215) 687-4432 to get the ball rolling on your claim.
Last updated 7 months ago
Retirees and disabled Americans who depend on Social Security assistance from the federal government would be greatly affected by a new congressional proposal called “Chained CPI.” This video explains how the proposal involves freezing the Cost of Living Adjustment used to increase Social Security payments to scale with inflation.
This policy would keep the benefit amount the same, no matter the rate of inflation. Over the course of someone’s retirement, this could have repercussions in the thousands of dollars. The federal government wants to implement a Chained CPI because it would save them money; however, it would effectively decrease the value of a retiree’s benefits.
If you live in Pennsylvania and your Social Security claim was recently denied, consider contacting attorney Todd M. Berk, Esq. by dialing (215) 687-4432. Our firm has decades of experience working with the Social Security Administration.