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2 Common Mistakes When Filing for Disability

The 2 mistakes we see all too often both stem from the same root issue:  waiting too long to file.

1.    All too often we see people holding off on filing during a good economy when jobs are plentiful, but then filing when the economy turns south and jobs are scarce.  Unfortunately, so does everyone else.  Wait times for cases are dramatically increased during bad economic times because more people are filing claims.  Social Security like other organizations reduces its work force around demand.  As the economy slows down and applications increase, Social Security's reaction time to these events is usually slow.  That means a backlog accummulates before it hires a sufficient well trained work force to meet the demand.  Whereas in good economic times, cases can literally breeze through the system.  Currently the wait time for hearing is less than a year in some places.  Compare that to 4 years ago when the wait times were double.

2.     People wait until they get laid off or terminated to file for short term (STD) or long term disability (LTD) at work.  Chances are, if you are limited in doing your job because of illness or injury, you will be the first person on the chopping block should your employer wish to down size.  Despite what people think, there are few protections for such workers, and savy employers generally know how to get around them.  Your STD/LTD claim gets significantly harder if you wait to file when you have been laid off or let go.  Both STD/LTD insurers and SSA will both take the position that you are able to work, but only stopped work because of the job termination. Had it not been for that event, you would still be working.  That is a hard argument to circumvent. 

People of integrity try to work as long as they can go. That is a very noble character trait. Yet, there is a bridge too far.  Like a professional athlete at the end of their career, often it is hard to see when it's time. RHK can help you assess that decision.

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Our founding partners each have more than 20 years of experience in disability law, and they have a high success rate in administrative appeals and litigation in SSDI, workers' comp and long-term disability claims involving ERISA. Contact our Atlanta office today to discuss your needs.

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