6 Important Tips When Applying for Disability Benefits
The success of your disability benefits application depends on how well your claims attorney executes it. To lodge a successful disability claim, you need to do a number of things.
1. File the Claim as Soon as Possible
There are deadlines within which you should file a disability benefits claim from your insurance company. Late filing can jeopardize your claim, especially if you file outside the prescribed deadlines. It is important to file a claim as soon as you can instead of waiting until you start running out of funds. Your application can take at least a year to process, or longer if you need to appeal an unfavourable decision. Don’t wait until all your resources are depleted to apply for disability benefits.
2. Hire an Attorney
It’s tough enough having to live with a disability. It could get worse if you decide to pursue a disability benefits claim on your own. Hire a lawyer to help you navigate the murky waters of filing a disability benefits claim. A competent disability claims attorney will take the stress out of a claims process and guide you towards a successful award within the shortest possible period. A competent disability attorney is patient with you and answers all your question, appears at your hearing, and helps you with the paperwork
3. Keep Records of Your Treatment
Maintain a journal with details about your condition, medical appointments, medical receipts, etc. Write down every medical treatment and medications you have received and how successful or otherwise they have been. Keep a diary of any chronic pain you are experiencing.
4. Document Disabling Conditions and Symptoms
Be it psychological or physical, each symptom you are experiencing will help your claim. Disabilities put many people under severe psychological strain. For instance, if you are diagnosed with anxiety, depression or mental stress after your disability, it is important that you document your mental condition in a journal.
5. Get Your Doctor Involved
Your doctor’s office can provide you with crucial medical records that could greatly help your claim. Get copies of all crucial medical records, which are available at your physician’s office. To lodge a successful claim, you will also need a letter from your doctor detailing how your condition has limited your ability to go back to work and to engage in productive everyday activities. Some doctors are reluctant to get involved in providing the required paperwork to lodge a successful claim.
However, your disability insurance lawyer will make sure all the necessary medical records are availed to you. He or she will also make sure that such records are as clear and complete as possible. At the end of the day, your doctor’s evidence will greatly determine how your claim will pan out.
6. If You fail the First Time, Try Again
Most claim proceedings are set up to make you give up. Don’t! A claims denial is not final. In fact, a first claims denial is engineered to discourage you, to make you give up. Statistics indicate that more than 60% of claims are initially denied. If your claim is unsuccessful, appeal. If it is denied a second time, appeal and keep appealing until you succeed. This is why you need a seasoned and brittle claims attorney who is determined to aggressively pursue your claim until you get the benefits you deserve.
Applying for disability benefits is the first step to ensuring compensation for disabling injuries. Insurance companies, however, will attempt to make the process as complicated and nerve-wracking as possible to make you give up. With a competent disability claims attorney, you will be able to circumvent the roadblocks erected by your insurance company and ensure a successful claim.