How to Prepare for Your First Meeting with a Social Security Disability Lawyer
While there’s no way to guarantee your Social Security disability claim will be approved, there are steps you can take to increase your chances of securing the benefits you deserve. In fact, you can start from day one by preparing for your first meeting with the attorney.
Read on for a few things you should do in advance to help your claim get off to a strong start during your initial consultation:
1. Compile Your Medical Records
Medical records are inevitably the foundation of every disability claim, so compile whatever you have on hand (or what you have access to via your providers’ online portals), and then bring the documents to your first meeting. You should be prepared to present diagnostic images, nursing logs, progress reports, psychological evaluations, and any other relevant documents that provide insight on your injury, illness, or disability.
2. Gather Relevant Financial Documents
Generally speaking, disability benefits are based on past wages. As such, your lawyer will want to see your most recent paystubs and tax returns. After reviewing such documents, they’ll be able to give you some idea of what to expect in the way of payments if your claim is approved.
3. Start Keeping a Journal
In order to be eligible for disability benefits, you must be unable to earn a living wage. While the Social Security Administration (SSA) is not going to take your word for it—they need to see documentation from legitimate medical professionals vouching for you—you may be able to bolster your credibility using journal entries.
What’s more, your legal team will want to know about your everyday life and the kinds of hurdles you face as a result of your disability. Detailed statements in your own words will allow them to devise a strategic angle for your claim, so start writing in a journal as soon as you decide you want to apply for benefits. Then, bring these entries to your first meeting with the attorney.
4. Dig up Any Correspondence with the SSA
Have you had any correspondence with the SSA regarding your claim? If so—or if you’ve already received a denial—gather the letters and make sure to bring them to your initial consultation. Your lawyer needs to know exactly where you stand with the SSA in order to devise a way forward.
If you’ve had any phone calls with a representative, write down what the call was about as soon as possible, and bring that log to your meeting, as well.
Speak with a West Palm Beach Social Security Disability Attorney
If you want to apply for Social Security disability benefits—or appeal a denial—turn to Donaldson & Weston for personalized guidance at every stage of the process. Our team knows what it takes for injured, ill, and disabled parties to secure the funds they deserve, and we’re prepared to fight tenaciously on your behalf. Call 561-299-3999 or submit our Contact Form to schedule a free initial consultation with Social Security disability lawyer in West Palm Beach.