Winning your Social Security Disability (SSD or SSDI) hearing is a goal well within your reach if you follow a few important steps. The SSD benefits application process can be intimidating for someone unfamiliar with the bureaucracy and the array of Social Security Administration (SSA) procedures. Here is a simple and reliable “How to Win” list of things you can do to maximize your chances of winning your SSD hearing.
Hire an Experienced Social Security Disability Lawyer
As long-time professional SSD / SSDI lawyers and advocates, our entire team at The Clauson Law Firm knows how damaging it can be for amateurs or lawyers who only dabble in Social Security Disability Law to handle an SSD claim for an injured or ill worker. Clauson Law specializes in representing disabled clients and getting their well-deserved SSD benefits as fully and as quickly as possible.
What can go wrong if you don’t get a skilled, experienced SSD lawyer? Clients who have poor representation can be denied benefits because supporting medical documents were incomplete, filing dates were missed, benefit errors were overlooked, or their lawyer wasn’t prepared to answer the hearing officer’s questions. Get an experienced SSD lawyer who specializes and is board certified in disability law.
Keep All Your Medical and Therapy Appointments
The reason your Social Security Disability case is scheduled for a hearing is that you or your lawyer appealed a previous denial. The hearing officer will listen and review every aspect of your case and consider everything they think is significant. If you miss multiple treatment or therapy appointments, the hearing officer may reasonably conclude that you are either disinterested in recovering or that you are less disabled than you claim.
If you do need to miss a doctor’s visit or a therapy session, make sure to reschedule the appointment immediately and as soon as possible.
Keep a Disability Diary
Waiting for your SSD benefits to be approved can be a painfully long endeavor. Because so much time may pass before your hearing date, your memory can fade. You may forget occasions you felt pain standing, sitting, or walking for too long a time. You may forget the sharp pain you felt when you winced reaching for a cupboard shelf or bent over to lift a shopping bag. Note these incidents as they happen, and you will be able to report them to your doctors who can record them in your records. You might also refer to your notes when preparing for your SSD hearing.
Don’t Exaggerate or Downplay Your Symptoms or Daily Limitations
It’s normal to be nervous when you appear for your long-awaited SSD hearing. Dress respectfully so you convey your seriousness to the hearing officer. When answering questions, don’t minimize your experience of pain or depression. The purpose of your hearing is to give the SSD hearing officer a true sense of your situation. Avoid the temptation to be a hero by saying, “Oh, the pain’s not that bad.”
Likewise, do not exaggerate your symptoms or your impairment. Being perceived as inflating your pain or overstating your disability in one instance can lead the hearing officer to doubt your credibility entirely.
Francis Babet loves pursuing excellence through writing and has a passion for Legal. He currently writes for The law Firm, a USA Based Law Firm that provides SSD, SSI, SSDI, Personal Injury, and Drugs and Devices. His work has been published on various sites related to Social Security Disability, Supplemental Security Income and more.