When applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, you want to ensure your application is as strong as possible. However, many applicants make avoidable mistakes that end up hurting their claims.
A denied SSDI claim can leave you without the financial support to cover medical expenses and living costs. It can put you in a difficult situation, leading to increased stress and hardship. Therefore, it helps to be wary of these common pitfalls when making your SSDI application.
1. Providing insufficient medical evidence
To qualify for benefits, you must demonstrate that your condition meets the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) definition of disability. This requires extensive medical documentation, including detailed reports from healthcare professionals, treatment plans, medications and any functional limitations caused by your condition. Failure to provide ample medical evidence can jeopardize your claim.
2. Not being honest about your condition
You may be tempted to exaggerate or downplay your symptoms or limitations to get approved for SSDI benefits. However, this can backfire and hurt your credibility and chances of getting approved. The SSA reviews all the evidence in your case, including your statements, medical records, work history and third-party reports. As such, you should be honest and consistent about your condition.
3. Not following your doctor’s orders
The SSA will evaluate whether you are following the prescribed treatment and whether it is expected to improve your condition. If you are not following your doctor’s orders, the SSA may deny your claim or reduce your benefits. Ensure you follow your doctor’s advice and keep a record of your appointments, medications and any side effects or complications.
4. Not having legal representation
The SSDI application process can be complex and lengthy, and you may face many challenges along the way. Having informed guidance by your side will help you navigate the system, gather the necessary documentation and avoid doing anything that could work against you.
By avoiding these mistakes and following the proper steps when applying for SSDI benefits, you can significantly increase your chances of a successful application.