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We Have The Social Security Disability Answers You Need

Social Security Disability (SSD) can be a lengthy, frustrating process when you try to get through it on your own. You can rely on the compassionate, knowledgeable attorneys at Fessenden Laumer & DeAngelo, PLLC, to help you understand your options. We can help you with the initial application and with appeals if you receive a denial. Please see the frequently asked questions below, and contact us if you have other concerns.

From our offices in Jamestown, Fredonia and Olean, we serve Southwestern New York and Northwestern Pennsylvania with SSD claims help. Call 716-281-8393 today.

Am I Eligible For Social Security Disability Benefits?

According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), you are eligible for SSD benefits if you have enough work “credits” from jobs that were covered by Social Security. You need to earn these credits within a certain time frame that ends with when your disability began. Then you must also have a disabling condition that results in you being unable to work for at least a year. There are additional qualifications for getting SSD benefits; please speak with us to learn more.

What If My Claim Was Denied?

The majority of SSD claims are denied at first. This does not mean that you should give up, however. We can help you through the appeals process, starting with determining why the SSA denied your initial claim. Then we will correct any problems with the application and apply for reconsideration.

If you receive another denial, we will apply for a hearing with an administrative law judge (ALJ). If the ALJ denies the claim, we can request a review of the ALJ hearing with the appeals council. Further steps in the appeals process include filing a lawsuit in federal district court and finally taking the case to the Supreme Court, although this is very rare.

What Are Compassionate Allowances?

There are some very serious diseases and conditions that are fast-tracked through the SSD process under the Compassionate Allowances program. The list of qualifying conditions is long but generally includes adult brain disorders and many types of cancer. Children with certain serious disorders may also qualify for a compassionate allowance.

People who qualify for a compassionate allowance will receive benefits much more quickly, which is critical for the applicant and their family in these cases.

Can I Return To Work On SSD?

Yes, you may be able to go back to work while receiving SSD benefits. You must alert the SSA if you go back to work while receiving benefits or if your work hours, pay and/or duties have changed.

The SSA can assist you with returning to work by providing work incentives that include a continuation of your cash benefits for a period of time, continued Medicare or Medicaid benefits and help for people transitioning to a new type of work. If your disability prevents you from working again in the future, you will not have to go through the entire application process. Instead, the SSA will expedite your application.

Can I Get Benefits For A Mental Illness Or Condition?

Yes, you can get benefits for certain types of mental illnesses or psychological disabilities, including schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As with physical illnesses and conditions, you must be able to show that the disability prevents you from working in a substantial gainful activity for at least a year. These cases are often complex, so you need an experienced lawyer who knows how to gather the medical evidence that the SSA requires.

Do You Have More Questions?

We offer a consultation to discuss your SSD claim. Please call 716-281-8393 or complete our intake form to set up a consultation. Our experienced attorneys can explain your options and help you move the process forward when appropriate.