There are many ways in which claimants do themselves more harm than good when they file for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income, especially when they try to go through the process alone. Filing an incomplete disability claim is one of the most common mistakes, and almost always results in a denial.
Over 70% of claimants are denied after initially applying, and a major reason is due to improperly filled out forms. The success rate rises dramatically when a claimant is represented by a qualified Social Security Disability advocate or attorney. Much of the difference in success rates is simply because a disability lawyer knows how to be meticulous and make sure all the necessary information is filled out.
When filling out the Social Security Disability claim forms, it is absolutely necessary to make sure that every line is filled out. If there is a part of the form that does not apply to you, fill it in with “N/A.” However, you should not enter this until you are entirely certain that it does not apply to you.
In addition to making sure that every section of the claim forms are completely filled in, you will want to make sure that all of the needed medical documentation is turned in as well. While this is often not under your direct control (the SSA sometimes requests the documentation directly from your health care providers), you should nonetheless double check and verify that the SSA has everything it needs to make its determination. Often, a call to your doctor or other heath care provider asking them to be sure to promptly return anything the SSA requests can help ensure that you aren’t turned down for lack of medical documentation.
One of the things many claimants notice when filling out Social Security Disability claim forms is that the SSA seems to ask for the same basic information in several different places. It is important that you completely fill out each one separately, even if you have already recorded the same basic information elsewhere. The process of getting your claim approved will take several months anyway, and you’re much better off avoiding further delays. Ultimately, it matters more when your claim is approved than when it is turned in.
Most claimants find it helpful to have a Social Security Disability lawyer help the, right from the beginning of the claims process. This is partly because you can be sure that the forms are filled out as completely as they can be when a disability attorney is taking care of the claim for you, but it is also because many of the questions on the SSA’s forms are designed to show that you are capable of working. Even with an attorney, the forms can be difficult, so be sure to take your time and demonstrate meticulous detail when completing them.