As often as I can, I help workers over the age of 55 who can no longer perform their past work due to physical impairments with their initial disability applications. I have worked with many clients in this age group, and often a claim can be granted without the necessity of an appeal or a hearing, because the initial application is completed properly.
These claimants come to my office, we talk about their case, and together we apply for disability online on Social Security's website.
I ensure that I have a winning theory of the case before filing. Then, I help the client thoroughly complete the work history report, being sure to fully describe the requirements of past work. I analyze the past work for transferable skills. Then, I ensure that the claimant describes his or her functional limitations, and ensure that all sources of medical treatment are listed (so that Social Security gets a complete medical record). Lastly, I ask the client which of his or her doctors are the most supportive, so that I can get a doctor's opinion right away.
I recently received the favorable determination for a client who came to my office applied for disability and early retirement. He is pleased to have his disability benefits without any of the delays that can result from errors in the application process.
I think it is important for this group of claimants to have help with their initial application, because mistakes can be very costly, in terms of time waiting for a favorable determination, appeals and the possibility of denied disability benefits. I strongly believe you can maximize your opportunity for the benefits you have earned by involving a disability lawyer at the initial stage, either with the application itself or shortly thereafter.