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Initial SSDI disability application what am I doing wrong?

Recently on our legal forum a user asked, “I have applied for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits (SSDI) three times and have been denied every time. I have family members who have applied who received benefits the first time they applied, and they are not as sick as I am. I am starting to think that maybe I am doing something wrong on my initial SSDI disability application. What am I doing wrong?” disability-legal-help

Winning SSDI with your first SSDI disability application

Millions of individuals apply for disability benefits each year. Believe it or not, up to 70% of first time applicants are denied benefits. Now, as you might imagine, there are dozens of reasons that you could be denied benefits. Let’s review some the steps you need to take to ensure that you are approved for benefit on your initial SSDI disability application.
  1. Understand the disability process.
Claimants often apply for SSDI benefits without any understanding of the process, what they need to do to qualify, or general information about how to complete their initial SSDI disability application. While this might have made sense years ago when the only good way to find out information about the process was to contact the SSA, now there is literally thousands of articles online about applying for SSDI benefits. Whether you decide to hire a disability lawyer, contact the SSA and talk to an SSA representative, buy a book about disability, or review online disability articles, you must find out about the disability process and how to complete your initial SSDI disability application.
  1. Determine if you are working too much or making too much money.
Another common mistake made by disability applicants is applying while they are working or earning too much money. Although many claimants do not understand how they can stop working to apply for SSDI, the bottom line is that if you are working and making too much money when you apply for SSDI, the SSA will assume you are not disabled.
  1. Determine if you have sufficient evidence to prove you cannot work. 
The SSA will make their disability determination by reviewing your medical records and deciding whether your health condition meets or exceeds a listing or is so severe that you cannot work. If you have no medical evidence or you have not seen a doctor, it’s tough to prove that you are disabled. The SSA does not necessarily care that you do not have the money to see a doctor. In fact, they are more likely to think that if you are severely disabled or ill that you will find a way to see doctor. Just as importantly, do not rely on the consultative examination to win benefits. These exams generally do not help claimants win SSDI benefits.
  1. Discuss your case with an expert.
If after you have taken all the above steps and you are still not clear about how to complete your initial SSDI disability application, talk to a disability expert. Options include talking to a disability lawyer about your condition, hiring a company to complete your initial SSDI disability application, or meeting with the SSA and getting all the information they are willing to provide. Bottom Line: Not understanding the disability process and getting the right medical help before you complete your initial SSDI disability application can reduce your chances of winning SSDI benefits the first time you apply.