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If you’re about to apply for benefits, you might wonder: why should I hire a Supplemental Social Security attorney? In recent years, the Social Security Administration expressed some concern that it might run out of money. This stems from the fact that America has an aging population.

More seniors withdrawing payments and fewer people paying into the system threatens its longevity. For these and other reasons, the SSA tightened its restrictions, making it difficult to obtain benefits even when you qualify.

What Is Supplemental Security Income?

According to the SSA, this program provides monthly payments to qualifying persons who fall into two categories. The first involves either adults or children with qualifying disabilities. Next, seniors over 65, who meet income requirements, may receive benefits. The ability to receive benefits also depends on how long adults paid into the Social Security system.

How Do You Apply for Supplemental Security Income?

How you apply depends on the reasons you qualify for SSI. For example, adults with disabilities may complete the entire process online. In contrast, when filing for children, adults may complete a part of the application online, but the rest needs to be completed by phone. Surprisingly, seniors cannot currently complete the process online at all. Instead, they need to apply at their local offices or call in and do it over the phone. Note that applying via the local office may require an appointment.

When Should You Hire a Social Security Attorney?

The best time to hire an attorney is before you start the application process. While working with a professional does not guarantee success, it reduces the likelihood of making mistakes that could cost you time and money. It is better to take a proactive approach and eliminate these risks before they pose a problem.
Another good time to hire a Social Security attorney is after a denial. The SSA reports that when they deny claims, individuals have the right to appeal. Working with an attorney might improve the chances of success the second time around. Here’s why:

  • Your disability attorney can investigate and determine what might have contributed to the denial.
  • Your disability lawyer might discover additional information to bolster your claim.
  • Your Social Security disability attorney might better word your claim to make it more effective.
  • Your Social Security disability lawyer is experienced and might have additional information on how to improve your claim.

What Should You Look for When Hiring a Social Security Lawyer?

When hiring a Social Security lawyer, ensure the person is an actual attorney. Many people misrepresent themselves as Social Security Disability attorneys by running ads as advocates. These individuals can often do a world of good for people with simple and straightforward cases, but the risk usually costs much more than the savings.

Should you need to go to court or attend a hearing, these advocates cannot represent you because they are not attorneys. In fact, these professionals likely received no training at all. In some cases, they might partner with a local attorney to attend the hearing on your behalf, but you might never even meet them, and the person might only receive a quick rundown of your case.

At the Law Offices of Melanie Leavitt, you can rest assured that your case will be handled by licensed Social Security Lawyers in New Orleans, Louisiana. Because we are local to your area, we are more familiar with some of the nuances of your situation, the local offices, and the local court system. This allows us to better represent you as true advocates, backed by law degrees. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.

 

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Social security disability is a crucial resource for those who cannot work due to physical or mental disabilities and illnesses. The financial support offered by SSDI allows individuals and families impacted by the effects of ongoing illness or disability to maintain some form of financial stability throughout their lives. However, as important as this resource is for millions of United States citizens, getting an SSDI application approved and receiving an award of monthly support is now harder than ever. That’s where the professionals at the Law Offices of Melanie Leavitt come in. Our team of professionals have over 50 years of combined experience in law and takes a hands-on approach to guide our clients through the process of applying for SSDI benefits throughout Louisiana. We know the application process inside and out and how to maximize your chances of being awarded the financial support you need in the face of your disability or the disability of a family member.

How Do You Know When it Is Time?

It’s never too early to hire a social security disability attorney to help you through the application process. If you think you have a valid claim to SSDI, having a disability lawyer on your side from the very beginning can only be beneficial to your case. Filing for disability is an often complicated process, and even a slight error in your paperwork or a single missing document will result in a denial of your award. Furthermore, failure to thoroughly establish your disability with a qualified medical professional’s assistance could result in denial. There are a number of stumbling blocks you could hit on the way to gaining SSDI support, but a professional disability lawyer has the knowledge and experience necessary to guide you around them without fail.

 

First, an SSDI attorney can help you connect with a qualified doctor who can help you with establishing your disability. This is a crucial first step in the process, as it shows the courts and those who review your application that you or your loved one are truly in need of financial assistance due to disability. Hiring a social security disability lawyer before taking this first step is the best way to ensure your doctor has filled out your paperwork correctly and in a way that adequately purveys the difficulty of your situation to the courts.

 

If you’ve already submitted an application for SSDI and been rejected, you’ll still benefit from working with an SSDI attorney. In fact, this is the perfect time for hiring a social security disability attorney. If your application is denied, the Social Security Administration will grant you a 60 day period in which you may request a review or appeal of the decision. When you choose to appeal, you’ll receive several more documents to complete along with the opportunity to attend a hearing, either in person or over video. Appeal wait times can be long and stressful. Social security disability lawyers work to keep the process as hassle-free as possible by ensuring your paperwork is complete and standing beside you in any hearings you have scheduled.

Why Choose Us?

Why should I hire a social security disability attorney? How will it benefit me? Will it give me better chances of obtaining an SSDI award? If you’ve asked yourself any of these questions, it’s time to call the professionals at the Law Offices of Melanie Leavitt. With decades of combined experience, we’ve been serving disabled individuals in key areas of Louisiana for years and are dedicated to getting financial support to those who need it most. Furthermore, we never leave you to fend for yourself. Unlike long-distance advocates you might find online, we are local, licensed attorneys. We’ll stand beside you in court to ensure your voice is heard and that you’re truly getting the treatment you deserve.

 

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Within the United States, hundreds of thousands of disabled individuals rely on social security benefits to maintain a measure of financial security. For those who experience a disability that makes maintaining a job impossible, SSDI is often the only chance they have of remaining independent, safe, and healthy. For decades, the professionals at Leavitt & Meunier Law have been here to guide those with disabilities throughout Louisiana through the process of establishing disability and gaining the compensation they need. We’re here to ensure you understand what benefits you could receive and that you’re on the right path to getting the award you need without the stress of stumbling through the complicated, convoluted application process on your own.

What Social Security Benefits Are There for People With Disabilities?

Social security disability benefits are typically awarded to those who have a debilitating mental or physical illness that is either expected to last for a minimum of one year or result in death, leaving them unable to work a regular paying job. It’s worth noting that there are actually two types of social security benefits; SSDI and SSI.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is awarded to individuals (and certain family members) if the disabled individual has worked long enough and paid taxes on the earnings from that work. Your eligibility for this award depends mostly on how much you have paid into Social Security via your income taxes over the years, and those with low or no long-term income may find themselves ineligible for SSDI support.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI), on the other hand, may be available to disabled adults who have limited household income and few resources. This acts as an important alternative to those who have been unable to work and pay taxes due to a wide range of different reasons but still require support in the face of a serious disability.

If awarded with either of these social security disability benefits programs, the disabled person in question (as well as children or certain other family members in some cases) will receive a set monthly payment. This payment is subject to review throughout the granted period, and may be raised, lowered, or even withdrawn. It’s a tricky situation, which is why it’s always advised to work with a legal professional when applying for your SSI or SSDI benefits.

Though the programs are slightly different from one another, the medical requirements for receiving them are identical. With the help of a doctor, you must establish that you have a disability that prevents you from receiving reliable financial income. This process can be challenging at the best of times, which it’s why it’s always a good idea to work with an attorney who specializes in dealing with the application and appeal process from beginning to end. The professionals at the Leavitt & Meunier Law know the application inside and out and can walk you through the entire process. From recommending you to a doctor to accumulating and submitting your documents and paperwork, we’re here to ensure you’re getting the financial support you deserve.

Learn More

Contact Leavitt & Meunier Law today to learn more about the benefits you or your loved one may stand to gain after being diagnosed with a disability that leaves you unable to work. We’ll take a personal, in-depth look at your case and guide you through the process of gaining the financial support you need and deserve as soon as possible. The application process can be a tricky one. Still, we’re here with years of experience, dedication, and expertise to make it as smooth and easy as possible so you can find security without the stress.

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Why You Need a Social Security Disability Lawyer

Social Security disability is designed to help those who have put in their time and paid into disability during their years of employment, but who are now unable to work because of a physical or mental disability.

While this program is designed to be a safety net for hard-working Americans, going through the process of becoming eligible for Social Security disability can be very difficult, confusing, and time-consuming.

It can make sense to have an experienced guide work with you as you put together your application and seek to receive your benefits. A Social Security disability lawyer can provide guidance, support, and knowledge to help you through the required steps and give you peace-of-mind regarding the Social Security disability request process.

 

Social Security Disability Lawyers Are Familiar With the Application Process.

With almost any type of assistance program, a host of cumbersome steps are required to request and receive aid. Social Security disability is no exception.

It’s a myth that all applications are denied the first time around. However, more than two-thirds of applications are rejected after their initial review, which means there are a lot of people who are disappointed and stressed about whether they’ll be able to support themselves when their disability coverage doesn’t come through.

According to statistics from the Social Security Administration, more than 30 percent of applicants are denied for a technical (non-medical) decision before a medical determination is ever made. These technical reasons for denial can be big, and sometimes unnecessary, roadblocks – like failing to exempt the value of your car or home from your overall income/asset statement.

Knowledgeable Social Security disability lawyers have worked through the paperwork for disability claims for hundreds of clients and will be able to guide you through the application process to give you a better chance of being awarded your benefits on your first application attempt.

With a Social Security disability attorney supporting you, you’ll risk fewer missteps, like missing a filing date or leaving out critical information, both of which could mean a rejection of your application and a time-consuming appeal process.

 

A Social Security Disability Attorney Can Guide You Through the Appeal Process If Your Benefits Are Initially Denied.

If your initial benefit request was not accepted, the Social Security Administration will grant you 60 days to request an appeal/review.

During the appeal process, you’ll receive an additional set of documents to be completed and returned, as well as have the opportunity for a video or in-person hearing. While you can complete this process on your own, a Social Security disability attorney can make it easier to ensure you’re compiling all the necessary information.

The appeal process can be lengthy, with 60 days to appeal the initial denial, then 60 days between each subsequent appeal. Each delay means a longer time waiting for financial support, which can be stressful and frustrating.

 

An Attorney Can Take Your Case to Federal Court If Your Social Security Disability Benefits Are Denied.

The appeal process for Social Security disability can include up to four different levels/separate instances of review:

  • Reconsideration
  • Hearing by an administrative law judge
  • Review by the Appeals Council
  • Federal Court review

When you reach the level of federal court review, you’re essentially suing the Social Security Administration for wrongfully withholding your benefits. When you’ve reached this point, you don’t want anything to slow the process down, get in your way, or negatively impact your final appeal.

The process of participating in a federal court appeal includes making court filings and being represented in the federal court hearing. Handling the case on your own may represent to the

court that you have the ability to work, thus negating your case. An attorney’s guidance and support can be invaluable in presenting the evidence required to further your claim and increase your chance at a positive outcome.

The cost of securing an attorney may be a top-of-mind concern for disability applicants, especially because people filing for Social Security disability benefits are unable to work. However, attorneys who take on Social Security disability cases are not allowed to request upfront payment for their time from their clients.

Instead, they may receive a small upfront payment for expenses, then earn their additional payment based on whether their clients are able to secure their Social Security disability benefits.

You can complete the Social Security disability application process on your own; however, the top benefit of working with an attorney is having their guidance and support from the beginning.

With a Social Security disability lawyer supporting you through the process, you’ll have a better idea of what to expect and won’t be blindsided by a denial or a subsequent step in the appeal process.

The most important reason you NEED an experienced SS Disability attorney at the earliest possible stage of the process is for analysis, advice, and counsel as to the facts of your case and what evidence will be necessary to prove your disability. This is essential as otherwise, you could be wasting months of time during which the evidence is insufficient to prove your disability which can cost you the benefits you need so badly. The attorneys at Leavitt Meunier Law will analyze your case individually and advise you immediately as to what evidence will be necessary to win your case.

If you’re dealing with the pain and frustration of being disabled, don’t try to go through the disability application process on your own. Contact our team at Meunier Leavitt and let our knowledgeable Social Security disability attorneys support you through the disability application process.

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