A New York resident recently reached out to the media to reveal his horrific experience in seeking Social Security Disability benefits. The Southtowns resident applied for SSD benefits four years ago. He suffers from a terminal illness that has left him disabled. Originally, his claim was denied, but it was approved the following year. Now, years later, he is still waiting to start receiving the SSD benefits to which he is entitled. Our NYC Social Security Disability claims lawyer explores the wait times for SSD benefits and what you can do to speed up your claim below.
Currently, it is estimated that over one million people across the country have applied for Social Security disability benefits and not yet received an answer. Many have been waiting for years. For those in need of Social Security benefits, every day without an answer can have a negative effect on their life and finances. Making matters even worse, about two thirds of all claims are initially denied. Those that suffer an initial denial will wait far longer until their claim is ultimately successful, if ever.
There are steps you can take to avoid unnecessary delays in the processing of your SSD claim. For starters, you will want to ensure your initial application is as complete as possible. Most of the delays in claims processing stem from waiting for an ALJ hearing after being initially denied. As such, you will decrease claim times by taking measures to ensure your application is accepted the first time.
Your SSD application should conform with all legal requirements. Even minor mistakes could delay your claim. You should include as much information as you can about your medical condition. Provide the SSA office with thorough medical records, statements from your physician and your loved ones, and much more. Create a comprehensive claim that will be compelling enough to achieve the benefits you desire.
If your claim is unfortunately denied, you could consider requesting an on the record or OTR review, instead of waiting for an ALJ hearing. Under this type of appeal, an administrative law judge will make a decision based solely on the information within your file. A strong record could be the key to receiving benefits without the need for a formal hearing, but this type of appeal is not for everyone. Contact an SSD attorney for assistance with filing for SSD benefits.