Social security disability is a vital government-assistance program for many people, but being approved for these benefits can be a remarkably difficult challenge. While it may seem like proving disability would be simple, the legal process for receiving these benefits is arduous and highly complex. Due to these factors, you will likely benefit from experienced legal counsel. Furthermore, you may need some basic questions about this process answered to enhance your understanding of this filing process, and there are two questions in particular that you may need addressed.
How Are Unexpected Expenses Addressed with the Fee Agreement?
When you hire an attorney to represent you during these proceedings, you will need to sign a fee agreement that outlines what the attorney will be paid and when they will receive it. In most cases, your attorney will only be paid if they are able to get your claim approved, but there may be expenses that arise over the course of the proceedings that exceed this stated amount.
A common example of this type of expense occurs if you are forced to file additional documents with the court for an appeal. There are filing costs associated with appealing, and this may not have been calculated in the original fee agreement. When instances such as this arise, you are responsible for the costs incurred by navigating your case through the filing process. However, you will still only be liable for these expenses if your attorney is successful, and in these instances, the additional costs will simply be subtracted from the compensation you were awarded.
Why Is the Onset Date So Important?
One of the points of greatest contention in these filings is the onset date. This is the date when the injury or disease first occurred, and it plays a critical role in calculating compensation. For example, a person who suffers an injury at work may be able to continue performing for several days after the incident before their symptoms become too severe to continue. If the onset date is determined to be when the injury first caused the employee to start missing work, they may lose out on a substantial amount of money.
Fortunately, an experienced social security lawyer will be able to help you create an argument that helps to ensure the correct date is used when calculating your compensation. This is done through a systematic investigation of the event including interviewing witnesses, reviewing security camera footage and evaluating medical records.
Filing for social security disability is a process that can be daunting to go through due to its complexity. However, if you have a basic understanding of this process, you will be much better prepared to navigate your claim through the social security disability filing process.