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Detail Oriented: Social Security Application Success

When it's time to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, you will need to fill out Form SSA-16-BK. This form gets your quest for benefits started, and great care must be taken to fill it out accurately and completely. This is no time to be ashamed of your condition – SSDI is not a charity or a government handout. Each time you earn a paycheck you add funds to your account so that you can use the benefits when you are unable to work or when you eventually retire. Read on to learn about how the SSA reviews your medical information and how important it is to your claim.

Medical Information

The SSA only approves claims for those who have certain medical conditions. The greater the detail you can provide about your condition(s) the greater your chances of an approval. Many people are don't readily wish to discuss their physical and mental states of health with anyone, particularly on paper to a government agency. If you expect to be approved for SSDI benefits, you must be prepared to list each and every ailment you have that affects your job.

There may be one main condition that is of primary concern, and you should place an emphasis on that condition. You should also list other accompanying conditions even if the condition alone would not keep you from working. The SSA considers the full picture of your disability when deciding on benefits, so don't leave anything out. 

For example, most people who suffer from diabetes have a host of other problems. Diabetes can cause kidney disease, visions issues, heart problems, and more. Perhaps your main problem is that your kidney function is bad enough that you now need dialysis. You might list kidney disease as your main condition and include all other diabetes-related conditions as well.

Phrasing Your Information

While a full listing of each and every single medical problem you have is a start, you must also state the information in a clear and concise manner. Don't just say "I'm tired all the time", for example, if you have been diagnosed with a heart condition. Instead, you might say:

  • Diagnosed with congestive heart failure two years ago.
  • Suffering from extreme fatigue throughout the entire day with this symptom worsening as the day goes on.
  • Suffering from extreme difficulties breathing from any exertion at all, such as walking across a room, creates a need to stop and rest several times.
  • Suffering from cognitive difficulties that makes concentrating impossible. Must read and re-read materials several times before understanding them.

When you receive a denial letter in the mail, don't be surprised and don't give up. Contact a social security disability law firm for help in getting your claim approved at your appeal hearing.