The first step to getting Social Security disability benefits in West Virginia is filing a claim with the SSA. For various reasons, the initial claim is often denied. This doesn’t mean the claimant cannot get benefits. There is an appeals process that can be utilized to get the claim reconsidered. Many times, claims that were initially denied are later approved on appeal.
Far too many people fail to file an appeal after their disability claim gets denied when they have a chance of being approved if they follow the process. It’s important to take note of the final deadline to request reconsideration. Missing that deadline could mean starting the process over again. An attorney could help a client with their appeal to ensure the claim includes all the necessary documentation.
Like initial claims, requests for reconsideration are often denied. Instead of giving up at this point, those who believe they should qualify for benefits might get their claim approved if they request a hearing with an administrative law judge. Because a judge may consider more than the written documentation from the claimant and their medical team, claims are more likely to be approved at this level.
About 60% of claimants who go to their hearings with an experienced legal representative are approved for disability benefits. When choosing an attorney, it’s important to select one who has represented clients at Social Security Disability Insurance hearings. An experienced attorney may also help a client understand what questions they might expect from the judge. Being prepared may help the applicant present their case clearly to the judge so they can get the benefits they deserve.