The Pellegrin Firm, LLC
The federal government requires employees and employers to pay into Social Security for an employee’s entire working career. This system provides for retirement benefits in your sixties but also can provide for disability benefits earlier if the Social Security Administration finds you cannot work. What many people don’t understand is that the government is not going to give you the benefit of the doubt and make your case for you. The claimant needs to gather the medical information to show he or she is disabled and make a case. This is why an attorney can be helpful during the process.
There are two main disability programs administered by federal government: Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). To qualify for SSDI, you must have worked a certain number of years in a job where you paid Social Security (FICA) taxes. SSI is a social program that provides benefits to disabled people without an extensive work history and with minimal assets.
Statistics show that a claimant has a better chance of prevailing in a Social Security appeal if he or she retains an attorney. For most people, it makes sense to file the initial application for benefits without the help of an attorney. There is always the possibility the Social Security Administration might find a claimant disabled on the initial application. Unfortunately, many qualified people are not approved for benefits on the initial application. The system for evaluating disability applications is overwhelmed and underfunded, and often a misunderstood stray comment in a medical report can doom an application.
After a claimant is denied on the initial application, the next step in Louisiana is an appeal and a hearing with an administrative law judge. The Social Security Act and Social Security regulations are extremely complicated. Lawyers and judges argue and disagree all the time about how to apply the law to particular cases. A lawyer is in a best position to gather relevant medical evidence and advance the legal arguments that will win a claim. Social Security consultations with attorney David C. Pellegrin are free and any fees recovered on Social Security cases must be approved by the Social Security Administration.