Avoid These Mistakes When Applying for Social Security Disability
It’s no secret that applying for social security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits is difficult. If you’ve ever applied and been denied, you’re definitely not alone — approximately 70% of all applications for social security disability benefits are denied the first time. With so many different requirements to meet and rules to follow, it’s very easy to make mistakes. Here are just a few of the most common mistakes people make when applying for social security disability and how you can avoid them.
Applying for Unemployment and Social Security Benefits
Even though the Social Security Administration does not officially prohibit receiving unemployment benefits while receiving social security disability, it can send a mixed message about your ability to work. While you may be unable to work because of your injury, there is a fundamental difference between the two programs: unemployment is for people who can work and SSDI is for people who can’t. By applying for unemployment, you have to state that you’re actively seeking work and are able to work when you find it, but SSDI is intended for people who will be physically unable to work for at least twelve months.
Trying to Apply or Appeal By Yourself
Considering how many SSDI applications are denied the first time around, having the help of someone who truly understands the ins and outs of the application process can be very beneficial. An experienced social security disability lawyer has been through the process many times and has a strong understanding of all the requirements you need to meet. Whether you’re applying for the first time or want to appeal a rejected claim, a lawyer will be able to make sure your case is handled correctly.
Not Following Doctor’s Orders
If you’re applying for SSDI benefits, it’s important to show that you’re taking your health seriously. That means regularly seeing your doctors, taking medications as prescribed, using recommended types of therapy, and regularly using assistive devices like canes or braces. When you have a documented history of doing everything you can to try to minimize the effects of your injury and improve your quality of life, it helps support your claims about how severe your injury is.
Re-applying Instead of Appealing
Many people think that if their SSDI application has been wrongfully denied, the best course of action is to start the application process all over again. However, this typically results in the new application being denied as well. Appealing a decision tends to be the more successful route because it gives you a chance to better explain your situation and provide more supporting information about your case.