How long does the process take?

Asked on Aug 02nd, 2013 on Social Security Disability - Georgia
More details to this question:
My doctor told me yesterday that i should see about getting disability. I'm only 41. I'm still working even though it's not easy. There is no cure for Charcot Marie Tooth and my symptoms are just getting worse. What do I need to do??
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Answered on Sep 01st, 2013 at 9:26 AM
Your questions is a good one, but a difficult one.  The "process" may be resolved after the initial application, or go through multiple layers of appeals with the Social Security Administration.   I have seen claims resolved in a few months, and others after five years! Under the Social Security Act, “disability” means “inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.” "Work as long as you can" is what I tell my prospective clients.  More importantly, follow the advice of your doctor.  It sounds as if your doctor is encouraging you to explore the possibility of filing for Social Security Disability. At the top of this page is a "Find a Lawyer" link that will help you find an attorney that can help you explore.  

No attorney-client relationship has been established because of the information provided. Seek local counsel to address your particular facts. MJHJ

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Answered on Aug 05th, 2013 at 3:02 PM
The Social Security Administration uses a "sequential evaluation" process in evaluating a disability claim.  The first step in the process is to determine if the claimant is engaged in "substantial gainful activity".  If so, the claim is denied and the medical issues are not even reviewed.  So, unless an individual is not working, or is working very little, it is rarely helpful to move forward with a claim for benefits.  In most cases, it is better to continue to work as long as you can, and file your claim when you can no longer continue.  If it is inevitable that a claim will be necessary, focus on developing the medical evidence that will be necessary to prove the claim once it is filed.  See your doctors, ask for their opinion as to your work capabilities, tell them that you will be filing a claim soon, and ask for their help in documenting your medical problems as thoroughly as possible.  This may help you get an early favorable decision on your claim and avoid a lengthy appeal process. Once you have reached the point of filing a claim, help from an experienced attorney can be invaluable.  Your attorney can work with your doctors to insure the agency gets a complete picture of your impairments.  The attorney will handle any necessary appeals.  If a hearing is necessary, he/she will present your case to the judge through documents and witness testimony.  Most attorneys handle Social Security Disability cases on a contingent fee, so no fees will be due unless you win. MORGAN & MORGAN ATTORNEYS AT LAW, P.C. IS LOCATED IN ATHENS, GEORGIA.  WE HAVE MORE THAN 30 YEARS EXPERIENCE HELPING PEOPLE WITH DISABILITY CLAIMS, WORKERS COMPENSATION, AND BANKRUPTCY.  VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT WWW.MORGANLAWYERS.COM OR CALL (706)548-7070 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION.

Our response is for general information only. No attorney client relationship is created. Always consult with a qualified attorney directly.

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