Applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can be a complicated process. There will be a need for complete background and medical histories which could be very time-consuming. While you don’t need an attorney to get SSDI benefits, the pertinent question is whether or not you should have one. This is a personal decision and should be pondered carefully. The applicant should be fully persuaded in his or her own mind about this decision.
Should I get an attorney?
When you apply for SSDI, you are telling the government that your injuries or sickness are severe enough that they impede your normal ability to function. The application process is lengthy, and the stakes are very high for missing or incomplete information. Having an attorney brings extensive knowledge, experience and competence to the application process. Many applicants who have had favorable outcomes have expressly stated their appreciation for having competent help from their attorneys.
You can also opt to have an advocate who has been trained in the disability application process. Advocates have passed an exam to do this, and have met the stringent requirements to represent you in court. They are not attorneys but work in a similar capacity with respect to applying for disability benefits. She will direct your efforts, help prepare your case and do a lot of information gathering. Because of all the complexities involved in a disability case, applicants often choose to have advocates represent them.
Should I represent myself
Some SSDI applicants have successfully represented themselves before an SSDI judge and gotten approved for benefits. This is a viable option for those who are willing to put the time in and follow specific, detailed instructions. There are medical reports to collect, recommendations from doctors and other healthcare professionals and other documentation that must be submitted. So success for an SSDI claim is possible in whichever of the three routes you choose. But, just make an honest assessment about the choice you ultimately make.