5 Myths About Social Security Disability May 4, 2017 Filing a claim for Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) can be a complicated process. Since most people aren’t likely to look into it until they need it, few know how to make their way through the system. At Harrell & Harrell, P.A., our Social Security disability lawyers can help with a no-cost, no-obligation review of your disability claim and advise you on your legal options. Because of the system’s complexity, there are a number of misconceptions that persist about applying for SSDI benefits. These may cause applicants to hesitate in challenging a denial of benefits. Here are some of the most common myths: Myth #1: Everyone’s claim is denied at first. It’s true that on a nationwide basis, more initial claims are denied than approved, but applications are not automatically denied and the Social Security Administration (SSA) does not have a blanket policy that dictates denial. Once your first claim has been denied, however, continuing to file new applications—rather than an appeal—is not likely to result in an approval. Myth #2: I can’t work if I’m collecting benefits. According to the SSA, there are special rules that “make it possible for people receiving Social Security disability benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) to work and still receive monthly benefits.” It also states that should your medical condition keep you from continuing to work, your benefits can begin again, sometimes without having to file a new application. Myth #3: My physician says I’m disabled, so I’m sure to qualify. While information from your physician is part of the medical evidence necessary for approval, he or she does not make the decision. Approval or denial is entirely up to the SSA. Myth #4: I won’t be eligible for SSDI benefits until I’ve been disabled for 12 months. The SSA states that in order to be considered “disabled,” applicants’ disability “must result from a medically determinable mental or physical impairment that is expected to last for a continuous period of 12 months” or expected to result in an early death. So, although you may have had a medical disability for only six months, the expectation that your condition will last for at least 12 consecutive months may mean that you will be eligible for SSDI benefits. Myth #5: A lawyer can’t help if my claim has been denied. If your claim is denied, one course of action is to file an appeal. Although there’s no requirement that says you need an attorney in order to file an appeal, an experienced Social Security lawyer can assist you in navigating the process. The attorneys at Harrell & Harrell, P.A. will ensure that your case is properly prepared for a hearing, and that you are prepared as well. If you need legal assistance in seeking Social Security disability benefits or disability income, call us at 904-251-1111 or toll-free at 1-800-251-1111 for a free consultation.