Harlan Still & Koch

Navigating the lengthy SSD claims process


Last year, 7,400 people passed away while on the waitlist for SSD claims. This is a startling statistic, particularly if you are one of the over 1 million Americans currently waiting for a hearing on your SSD claim. A wait that currently averages about two years. But don't let these statistics deter you from applying and going through this evaluation process. In fact, what you should do is apply right away. One of the tips recommended by experts is to start the process of filing your claim immediately.

It is clear that the evaluation process and disability determinations can take quite some time to complete. As such, once you file your SSD claim it may still be a while until you can hope to see any benefits. Filing right away - before one's financial situation substantially worsens due to the loss in income - can be vital in avoiding a long period with no incoming money. If your condition improves you can always return to work, but you don't want to wait until things get worse.

In addition to filing early, there may be other steps you can take to reduce wait times and improve your chances of success with your first application. For instance certain groups, such as wounded veterans, or those hardest hit financially may qualify for an expedited process.

Finally, it is important to have all of the SSD information and know the ins and outs of the process to provide you with the best chance of success in the shortest amount of time. That is why many experts suggest working with an experienced attorney, who can assist with an SSD claim.

Source: Fort Worth Star-Telegram, "Steps to take if you're mired in the Social Security Disability process," Jeff Caplan, Dec. 8, 2017

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