Are you the type of person that likes to figure out how everything works? The type of person that seeks to try to first figure things out on your own? If so, you are not alone.
A lot of (future) clients tend to work through the disability process on their own.. at first. You will likely have a better chance of success with a disability lawyer on your side up-front, but finding one that will help is difficult. Often, the initial claim is left to go its own way and the results are more or less predictable. It’s not your fault though, the system is not set up to make disability claims easy to obtain.
If you’re like the majority, at some point you’ll ask your self, “when should I contact a disability attorney” or “when is it too late to hire a disability attorney?”
When you should Contact a Disability Attorney
As early as you can. You should not wait for a denial to contact an experienced disability lawyer. The risk in waiting for a denial is that when you are denied, you begin racking up due dates. The most important one being your appeal to the denial. If you want more direction on this, you should read, Your To-Do List for Social Security. If you wait too long to hire a disability attorney, you risk being too late to hire a disability attorney at all, at least on your appeal.
When It’s too late to Hire a Disability Attorney
Of course, attorneys exist because things aren’t perfect. You are navigating an imperfect system (Social Security) for a tough benefit to obtain (disability). Timelines get missed, mail gets lost, communication breaks down..so when is it too late to contact and retain a disability attorney?
If you want to know when it’s too late for your claim.. the answer is if your appeal period has lapsed. If you’re in the situation where the points made above don’t apply because you’ve already missed your timeliness, you’re probably already too late.
Even if you are past your appeal period though, you should still contact an experienced disability lawyer. There may be aspects of your claim that changes the situation or extraordinary circumstances that can salvage a claim. Alternatively, there may be a better route to pursue should you seek to go back again for another go-round.
When It’s Too Late…but It’s Not Too Late for Round 2..
Obviously seeking an appeal to a disability denial is the best course of action. But there are a lot of reasons why you might not be able to do this anymore. One reason often cited by clients is the “You Have to Apply Three Times” myth.
Whatever the reason, should your claim be beyond salvaging, you can apply again. A lot of successful claimants have applied several times. You wouldn’t be the first, and shouldn’t shy away from doing this if you need to.
The facts are that you cannot work because of an illness or injury, and you rate SSI or SSDI. You may just need a little extra help making the Social Security Administration understand this.