Every American who pays into the United States Social Security program has a right to seek benefits when they are disabled, and an Atlanta Social Security disability attorney can help you enforce those rights. Applying for and receiving benefits can be a very long, complicated process, and you may not receive any compensation for months or even years. In many cases, first-time applicants are denied, and you will then have to file an appeal within a short period of time. Missing one of the deadlines or filing incomplete paperwork can be a huge setback for your claim, and an Atlanta disability attorney can make sure that your case stays on track.
Do I Qualify For Social Security Disability Benefits?
Every case is different, but in general you will qualify if the following factors apply to you:
- You are not currently employed
- You have a severe physical or mental impairment
- Your impairment will last at least 12 months or result in your death
- If your impairment meets one of the Social Security Administration's (SSA) listed impairments such as blindness, chronic heart failure, cystic fibrosis, and many others.
What Is the Difference Between SSDI and SSI?
SSDI stands for Social Security Disability Insurance. In order to receive benefits you must have a qualifying impairment that makes you “disabled.” On the other hand, SSI provides “supplemental security income” for applicants who face substantial financial hardship in addition to being disabled. In order to receive SSI benefits you will have to show that your income, property, and assets fall below a certain threshold. If you have any trouble calculating the amount or understanding your reporting obligations, an Atlanta Social Security disability attorney can provide guidance.
Do I Need to Hire an Attorney Before I Apply for Benefits?
No, you are not required to hire an attorney, but most people hire an attorney after their first application is denied. The initial application is fairly straightforward, but unfortunately, many applicants are denied. If you receive a denial, it usually makes sense to consult an attorney and make sure that you do not miss any deadlines for appealing the decision.
How Long Do I Have to Appeal a Denial of Benefits?
Usually you will have 65 days to file an appeal. Failure to do so means that you will have to start the process all over again which can further delay receiving benefits. Missing the appeal deadline means you may not be able to collect “back” benefits that were accruing while your first application was pending.
How Much Might the Attorney Charge?
Unlike other types of claims where the attorney's contingent fee can vary, SSDI attorney fees are capped. Attorneys are allowed to collect up to 25% of the back benefits you are owed, and the maximum amount is capped at $6,000.
Contact an Atlanta Social Security Disability Attorney
Whether you are filing for benefits for the first time or you need to appeal an adverse decision by the Social Security Administration, we can help. Attorney Louis Lusk has well over 20 years of experience fighting for clients in some of the most complex Social Security cases. At The Law Office of Louis B. Lusk, we believe every client deserves personalized attention from an experienced and passionate advocate. Call our Atlanta Social Security disability attorneys today. We may be reached at (404) 250-7000.