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What to Do as You Wait for a Decision on Your Social Security Disability Status

October 21st, 2015 Social Security Disability
Social Security Disability status

A determination of disability does not come easily for some people, and waiting on Social Security Disability benefits can extend the struggle even longer. If you have endured surgical procedures, long recovery periods, rigorous physical therapy, and extensive diagnostic testing, finding relief must be your top priority. While you wait for an answer about your Social Security Disability status, there are certain things you should and should not do. Avoid actions that can threaten your ability to receive benefits and try those than can help you gain additional support while you are unable to work.

Check Your Status

It is entirely normal to be eager about learning the status of your Social Security Disability application during the evaluation process. This process can take several months, but you can check your status at any time on the Social Security Administration (SSA) website using your Social Security number and your application’s confirmation number. You can also call the Arkansas DDSSA office at 501-682-3030.

Expedite the Approval Process

Sometimes, checking on the status of your Social Security Disability application can actually expedite the approval process. However, the only way some claimants can have their application reviewed quickly is being approved via Quick Disability Determination. This allows for those with complete medical profiles or serious medical need to be reviewed within 20 days.

If your application is denied and you decide to file for appeal, you can submit a “dire need” letter requesting to have your hearing date sooner. When you enter the appeals process, seek help from an experienced Social Security Disability attorney to improve your chances of a favorable outcome.

Do Not Seek Employment

Before you attempt to seek part-time or full-time employment to help make ends meet, research the SSA’s current substantial gainful activity (SGA) figure to determine whether your employment will disqualify you from receiving approval for Social Security Disability. In most cases, as long as you are earning less than the substantial gainful activity limit, your employment will not prevent your approval. However, if you do earn more than the limit, your application can be denied as a result.

Find Healthcare Assistance

Many Social Security Disability applicants struggle to pay for healthcare and prescriptions while waiting for a decision. Additionally, noncompliance with prescription medications can result in a denial of Social Security Disability benefits. Apply for Medicaid or Medicare benefits through the state as soon as possible, and if you do not qualify, ask them about other programs that can help you.

Find Other Financial Assistance

For financial assistance while you wait for a decision, contact the Arkansas Department of Human Services to see if you qualify for assistance through a state program. Depending on what you qualify for, you could receive help with groceries, personal care, and even utilities. Speak to local food pantries, churches, and other non-profit organizations to see what assistance they can offer you.

If you were recently laid off, you may also be able to apply for unemployment benefits from the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services. If you have a short-term or long-term disability treatment plan, file a claim as soon as possible following the determination that you are unable to work.

If you have more questions while you wait for your Social Security Disability status, contact Nolan Caddell Reynolds for legal advice at 866-242-0452. Our experienced Social Security Disability attorneys can help you win your case.

Image licensed via Creative Commons by Tim Samoff on Flickr

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