Filing a successful application for Social Security benefits can be tricky. The process for applying requires strict compliance with complicated and confusing rules. Completing the required forms accurately can be a challenge. Properly completing the paperwork will certainly improve your chances of being approved for disability benefits the first time. However, if you find yourself facing a disability hearing, obtaining the assistance of a Rogers social security disability lawyer to help you could make the difference.
Mistakes in your application could lead to the denial of your application
Statistics show that the majority of social security disability claims are denied the first time. According to some reports, around 65% of all claims are denied when they are first filed, and nearly 85% are denied on appeal. Clearly, knowing some of the common mistakes that result in denial would be beneficial. Probably the most important thing you can do is consult with an experienced Rogers social security disability lawyer before filing your initial claim.
You must be able to prove you are disabled
You are only considered disabled “if you cannot do work that you did before and we decide that you cannot adjust to other work because of your medical condition(s).” The Social Security Administration must determine whether your disability will either last for at least one year or result in death. A Rogers social security disability lawyer can help you prepare your claim properly the first time in order to reduce the chances of being denied.
Establishing your credibility is key
A common issue in making a successful claim for disability benefits is credibility. That means, it is important to establish yourself as a credible applicant with the Social Security Administration officials reviewing your claim. When it comes time for an Administrative Law Judge to analyze your case, that judge will necessarily assess your credibility. Here are a few things to be aware of in supporting your application.
Demonstrating your truthfulness
Even though it may seem obvious that you must demonstrate your honesty, judges often ask questions to which they already know the answer. They do this in order to see if you are being untruthful in an attempt to bolster your claim. One example of this is making allegations of impairments at the hearing for which you never sought medical treatment.
A common misconception is that you need to tell the judge you cannot do anything, even when there are little things you can do. While those little things may not hurt your case, lying about them certainly can. This is where preparation with a Rogers social security disability lawyer who regularly appears disability hearings will be helpful. Knowing exactly what your records show, as well as the tendencies of a particular judge, can be very important.
Don’t make excuses for not receiving treatment
It is important that you continue to reasonably seek medical treatment for the condition for which you are seeking disability benefits. If you do not, be careful making excused for not doing so. If you claim the inability to afford medical treatment, be sure you aren’t spending money on conveniences. This may be difficult for some, due to the high cost of medical care. But you must document your efforts to obtain health care coverage. Apply for Medicaid or other benefits programs. Consider applying for charitable discounts from non-profit organizations. The first step may be to contact your local county health department for other options.
You must follow the treatment plan prescribed by your physician
Failing to follow the medical treatment prescribed by your doctor is extremely important. Many Administrative Law Judges consider this issue to be paramount. Simply put, if your doctor tells you to do something and the records do not demonstrate that you did, or at least attempted to, then you will likely have a significant credibility issue. Otherwise, the judge may assume that your medical condition must not be that severe if you make no effort to seek treatment.
Keep your statements about your condition consistent
Another issue that can affect your credibility is being inconsistent with doctors about how you feel. If you make statements to a doctor that you are not having any problems, but later try to claim at a hearing that those problems exist, you will damage your credibility. Another problem can be telling one doctor you are having a certain problem and then telling another doctor the exact opposite. Be sure to remain consistent regarding your medical condition at all times.
If you have questions regarding disability benefits application, or any other Social Security Disability issues in Arkansas or Missouri, please contact the Cottrell Law Office for a free consultation, either online or by calling toll-free at (888) 433-4861.
He is licensed to practice law in the United States District Court for the District of Kansas, eastern Arkansas, western Arkansas, and western Missouri. He was Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Crawford County, Kansas from 1987-1989.
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