The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs provide invaluable assistance for individuals who cannot work due to physical or mental disabilities.

Unfortunately, many deserving applicants struggle to get their claims approved, sometimes fighting for months or even years to get the benefits they rightly qualify for. The Illinois Social Security disability attorneys at Gerling Law understand your frustration and confusion. We fight to get your claim for disability approved, even if you have already received a denial of benefits.

How the Illinois Social Security Disability Claims Process Works

Illinois Social Security Disability Attorneys

The process for applying and getting approved for Social Security disability benefits can be confusing and time-consuming, especially if you aren’t familiar with the process.

The steps for applying for SSI and SSDI are essentially identical. You must complete and submit a claim that follows the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) required format. Your application must include all relevant documentation to support your condition and demonstrate specifically how it affects your ability to perform your job.

Once your application is submitted to the SSA, a reviewer evaluates your qualifications and provides a response typically within three to six months. Once your application is approved, you should start receiving your benefits within four to six weeks.

Can You Get SSDI for a Mental Illness?

You may be entitled to receive SSDI benefits if mental illness affects your ability to work. Some of the conditions that may qualify for benefits include depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and dementia.

To meet the SSA’s qualifications, mental illness must prevent you from working or being trained to work in another capacity. The condition must affect your ability to work for at least one year. Finally, a qualified medical professional (such as a psychiatrist or psychologist) must diagnose your condition and provide appropriate documentation for your claim.

The biggest hurdle to getting a mental illness disability claim approved is that you must prove that the condition causes functional limitations that affect your ability to work. Talk to one of our experienced attorneys about your claim for Social Security disability related to mental illness to learn more about your options.

Fighting a Denied Social Security Disability Claim

If the SSA denies your application for benefits, you must formally request a review (known as reconsideration) within 60 days. If you don’t act within this period, you must restart the application process.

After you request reconsideration, the SSA will assign your claim to another reviewer. It may take as long as three or four months to receive a decision about your review. If the SSA denies your claim a second time, you have 60 days to request a formal hearing. This hearing is conducted before an administrative law judge and may take up to two years to be scheduled. Once the hearing concludes, the judge may take as long as 90 days to render a decision. If your claim is denied after the hearing, we may have other options to appeal that decision.

How Can a Disability Lawyer Help?

As you can see, fighting a denied Social Security disability claim can be a lengthy process that prevents you from getting your much-needed benefits. Working with a disability attorney can help ensure that your claim gets processed and approved as quickly as possible, potentially avoiding the need for reviews and appeals.

A disability lawyer will handle every aspect of the claims process, including the preparation of your initial claim. This benefits you because your attorney will have a profound understanding of the process and the most effective way of documenting your condition. You will also benefit from your attorney’s resources, including referrals to doctors and other medical professionals who are familiar with SSDI and SSI assessments and documentation.

Your disability lawyer will be there for you throughout the process to provide the information and answers you need. Your attorney and legal team will work hard to build the most persuasive claim possible and fight to get you the benefits you deserve.

Talk to the Gerling Law Social Security Disability Attorneys Today

The experienced disability lawyers at Gerling Law understand how important it is to get your SSDI or SSI application approved quickly, so you have the financial resources you so desperately need.

We offer a no-cost case evaluation and consultation, so you can discuss your claim with one of our Illinois Social Security disability attorneys. Contact us now at 1-888-GERLING (888-437-5464) or complete our online Social Security disability case evaluation form to get started.