How the Disability Program Really Works

Mark Miller, Morningstar columnist and expert on aging and retirement writes: Most people think of Social Security as a retirement benefit, and that’s understandable. Among the 61 million Americans receiving Social Security at the end of 2016, 68%–44.3 million people–were retired. But Social Security’s broad aim is to protect against the risk of lost income […]

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What is a Vocational Expert?

In many disability claims, vocational evidence becomes pivotal. What does this mean, and what can you do if it appears in your claim file? Often vocational information is in a written report from a person who has never seen you, but simply has reviewed the record. After a finding of medical disability, the question becomes […]

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Congessional “Backdoor Assault”on Social Security System

Since they’ve been unsuccessful (thus far) at cutting Social Security benefits, congressional Republicans are continuing to resort to the backdoor assault on the program by starving its administrative budget. In the latest versions of the agency’s budget under consideration in Washington, the House is planning to keep the budget at the same inadequate funding level […]

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Two Year Delays in Disability Claims

Americans seeking Social Security disability benefits face massive administrative backlogs and long wait times. Over a million people are currently waiting for a decision on a disability hearing request. The average processing time for an appeal is 602 days, almost two years. Marketplace reports one family’s experience. Story here!

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Treating Physicians’ Evidence Diminished by New Rules

In the U.S., less than half of all people who apply for disability benefits — about 45 percent — are ultimately accepted, says Lisa Ekman with the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives. Getting a hearing takes an average of nearly 600 days. “It is not easy to get disability benefits, and it’s a […]

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Attorneys Fees in Social Security Cases

Attorneys’ fees in Social Security and SSI disability cases are paid under a rule set by Congress as part of the Social Security Act. This law allows attorneys to charge up to 25% of the back benefit achieved for the client, to a maximum of $6,000. The lawyer will be paid only out of your […]

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2018 Social Security Disability Benefit Rises Slightly.

Americans receiving Social Security benefits in 2018 can expect to see the program’s largest payment increase in years, according to the trustees report. In January, recipients will receive a $28 monthly increase in benefits, which, although amounts to just 2.2%, is much larger than the 0.3% increase in benefits recipients collected this year. In 2016 […]

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October: Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women. About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point. Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women. The good news is that many women can survive breast cancer if it’s […]

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If You’ve Been Denied, Appeal and Get Help!

Only about one-third of Social Security disability claims are approved at the initial level. Read the denial notice you receive from Social Security carefully — it will tell you what you need to do. Generally, here are the next steps to take: 1) File an appeal right away! If you are denied benefits at the […]

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