People who have filed for/received disability, help?

It is simply NOT true that an attorney is required to successfully qualify for SSDI/SSI disability benefits. Nor is risking the loss of no less than $6,000 of YOUR money necessary in the process.

I applied for SSDI in April 2016 and my application was accepted in October 2016 [within the 120-day window]. I did NOT hire an attorney. I am not blind, nor have I ever had limbs amputated.

My friend applied for SSI benefits last year, 2017. She, too, did NOT hire an attorney. She is not blind nor an amputee. She had her application successfully accepted within the 120 day window starting from the date she applied.

We both live in California. I mailed my hard-copy application [printed from the SSA website] via the US postal service, certified, return receipt requested. Conversely, my friend applied by scheduling an in-person interview with a representative at her local Social Security branch office. She had to attend a few additional in-person appointments in order to coordinate all of the information required.

In the case that you are completely alone and cannot recruit a spouse, parent, sibling, adult child or friend to assist you through the process, then I would recommend hiring an attorney simply from a convenience stand-point. This process is a daunting task of paperwork and maintaining cooperative communication with your treatment providers. However, please know that there is NOTHING that an attorney can do above and beyond what you can do on your own.

Further, if you have already submitted your application, and completed all of the documents to the very best of your ability ( including ALL of the medical documents and forms signed-off by your treatment providers: physicians, nurse practitioners, therapists, etc.) and yet, still received a denial, at that juncture, I recommend hiring an attorney to begin the process for your appeal.

/r/ChronicPain Thread