If you are considering filing a disability claim, or appealing a denied claim, consult a Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer immediately. You need compelling medical evidence and strong legal arguments to convince the Social Security Administration (SSA) that you deserve disability benefits. At Hermann Law Group, we help our clients navigate the complex Social Security disability claims process, while providing emotional support and aggressive legal representation.
Qualifications for Social Security Disability Benefits
Not all medical conditions qualify for Social Security disability (SSD) benefits. In order to qualify, you must show:
- You cannot engage in substantial gainful activity;
- You have a “medically determinable” impairment, which means your doctor diagnosed your condition based on clinical examinations and test results;
- Your medical condition lasted or is expected to last 12 continuous months, or expected to result in death;
- You meet one of SS’s medical conditions listed on the Compassionate Allowances Conditions or List of Impairments; or,
- You cannot perform work within your education, qualifications and training.
You must provide medical evidence, such as medical records, test results, and doctor narratives. The medical evidence should detail your diagnosis, prognosis, medical treatment, and limitations.
Your Social Security Disability Application
Your application for SSD benefits should include comprehensive information about your medical condition, treating physicians, medications, daily activities, and work experience. Prior to filing your claim, organize your information. For example:
- Identify the date your conditions became disabling;
- Compile your doctors and medical providers’ names and contact information;
- Consider how your medical condition impacts your daily activities and ability to work; and
- List your past employers, dates of employments, and job duties.
This will be time consuming and perhaps tedious work, but the more thorough information you provide to the SSA, the better the SSA can evaluate your claim.
SSA will review your claim after you complete both your application and Disability Report. During the investigation, you may be sent to an independent medical examiner, who will examine you, review your records, and provide a report. The SSA will either grant or deny your claim based upon its findings.
Denied Social Security Disability Claim
Don’t give up if your initial claim is denied. Too often, SSA denies legitimate claims. A Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer can help you appeal the denial by helping you file a Request for Hearing and a Disability Appeal Report.
Most SSD claims are denied for technicalities. A Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer can review your denial letter, examine your medical records and help your submit a thorough and comprehensive appeal, inclusive of any missing medical records. Depending on the type of disability, we can help with the following:
- Obtain copies of your medical records
- Analyze your medical evidence and your SSD file
- Conduct a transferable skills analysis (evaluating your education and work experience)
- Consult with your treating physicians and medical experts
- Evaluate whether your condition meets or is equal to a medical listing
- Craft legal arguments regarding Social Security law and regulations
- Prepare written arguments
- Complete forms and other paperwork
- Present testimony to an administrative law judge (ALJ)
Our Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer can help you understand the appeal process, develop your appeal, and help you through your hearing before the ALJ. You may even qualify for an On the Record decision, avoiding the appeal hearing.
Picking the Right Bergen County NJ Social Security Disability Lawyer
A crucial part of your SSD claim is finding the right lawyer. During your initial consultation with a Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer, ask yourself:
- Does the lawyer seem experienced and knowledgeable?
- Am I being treated with respect?
- Am I being listened to?
- Do I feel comfortable discussing my personal information and medical conditions with the attorney?
- Can I spend a year or more working with this attorney?
You should also ask the SSA representative the following:
- Are you a licensed attorney in good standing?
- How frequently do you handle SSD claims in Bergen County?
- Are you familiar with my medical conditions?
- How frequently will I meet or speak with you prior to my hearing?
- Will you attend my hearing or transfer my file to someone else?
Both the claims and appeals process for SSD benefits can be long and complicate process. If you are not comfortable with your attorney, do not sign the attorney’s fee agreement. Rather, call Hermann Law Group for a second opinion.
Consult a Seasoned Bergen County NJ Social Security Disability Lawyer
At Hermann Law Group we value our clients and will therefore treat you with respect. A Bergen County NJ Social Security disability lawyer will work hard for you, offering both personalized attention and aggressive representation. You do not have to pay an attorney’s fees unless you win your claim or appeal. Contact us today.