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The Two Types of SSDI Claim Denials in Pennsylvania

Posted Scott B. Cooper on Dec 08, 2013 in Social Security Disability

Contrary to what many people believe, the federal government is not spendthrift or hasty in giving away money. There are many checks in place to prevent SSDI fraud. These safeguards often act to deny or delay legitimate SSDI claims.

For the truly disabled, this is catastrophic. The rules for SSDI applications automatically require a five-month delay before an applicant is eligible to receive benefits. Add in the necessary processing time for a new application—which can easily take 12 to 18 months—and you will realize that the applicant may not have a primary source of income for two years or longer.

Disabled people desperately need their SSDI income. For almost half the people getting disability benefits, that monthly payment is 90 percent or more of their income. When people have benefits delayed for months at a time, they can face incredible hardship—some die.

It’s even worse for those people who sweat through the application process only to be told—a year later—that they have been found ineligible.

The Two Secrets for Avoiding a Denial of SSDI Benefits

By now, you’re aware of the statistics: about two-thirds of all SSDI applicants have their benefit claims denied. There are many options for appealing an adverse decision, but a lot of people simply give up at this point.

At Schmidt Kramer, our Pennsylvania disability benefits attorneys think that there’s a better alternative to filing an appeal—getting the application right in the first place. We have had extensive experience helping clients make a compelling presentation for their Social Security Administration caseworkers, and so we know what evidence will be persuasive. Obviously, we cannot make blanket guarantees that our help will assure than any application is approved, but we have been met with noteworthy successes at every stage of the SSDI process, from the initial application through each layer of appeal.

There are really only two fundamental reasons why SSDI applications are denied. If you are about to apply for federal disability benefits, the best thing you can do right now is double-check your application and make absolutely sure you can overcome each of these two barriers to success:

  • Medical denials – Applying for SSDI will require submitting comprehensive medical records from the doctors who have been treating you. Statements from yourself, friends, and family members simply don’t have the same credibility as statements from health care professionals. The medical records you submit should specify your diagnosis, the likely outcome of your condition, and the limits you face in handling routine daily or workplace activities. If your medical records are incomplete or unconvincing, your SSDI application will be denied.
  • Non-medical denials – The failure to meet income and employment standards accounts for almost all SSDI application rejections for non-medical reasons. Even the simple error of failing to write your Social Security number on a document can lead to a denied claim. In order to collect federal SSDI benefits, you must be able to prove your work history was both extensive and recent, and you must have an income below the cut-off threshold. You will face a non-medical denial if you cannot document your employment history sufficiently.

Paperwork? Yeah, We Do That

At Schmidt Kramer, we have helped central Pennsylvania SSDI applicants at each step of the process, from the first page of the application form to the final appeal. Sometimes we have had the sad duty to tell someone that he simply does not qualify for benefits under the current rules. Happily, we’re often able to get a satisfactory conclusion for a client’s application or appeal.

You can get the Schmidt Kramer advantage for your case, too. Call us at 888-476-0807 or use the handy online contact form to get in touch. Let us schedule a free conference with a lawyer to discuss your situation without obligation.