fact or myth signpostSSDI Myths

The Social Security disability is a huge government bureaucratic program with many rules and challenges developed over the past sixty plus years. As such, several myths have arisen and are commonly believed. We will look at a few of these myths and explain the truths behind them.


Denied Means Denied.

Actually, denied simply means, “Let’s try again.” Just more than 60% of initial applications are denied. If the myth were true it would mean that about 40% of applications are approved and no one else would have a chance. In reality, the Social Security Administration has established an appeals process and almost 50% of applicants who appeal their claim to an Administrative Law Judge are approved.

Only People With Life-Threatening Conditions are Approved.

Part of the established criteria for receipt of disability benefits is that the applicant has a physical and/or mental condition that is expected to last more than twelve months and prevents the person from working gainfully. Under this definition, millions of people qualify for benefits who do not have life-threatening conditions. With SSDI many people with disabilities are be able to pay bills and get the medical help and treatments needed for their conditions.

I Don’t Need an Expensive Attorney

This myth is only partially false. It is true that you do not have to have a lawyer to file for benefits or appeal a denial. However, more people who successfully obtained their benefits hired an attorney to assist them with appeals than those who did not. In most cases it’s a lot more expensive to lose your appeals and benefits than to pay an attorney.

I Don’t Need to Visit Doctors.

SSDI benefits are based on medical conditions preventing a person from working. You will need to be able to prove that you have the conditions you claim. Proof can only come from medical records provided by doctors you have visited. Therefore, having a doctor as a good ally is a huge benefit.

My Doctor’s Notes are all I Need.

This is close to the opposite of the above myth where we established that you need to have a doctor verify your medical conditions. However, a medical record from one doctor may not be sufficient evidence to prove your case. Therefore, it is good to have notes from more than one doctor as well as specialists.

The SSDI Application Process is too Confusing

Well, most government programs are confusing! However, the SSA has taken great strives over the past decade to make the process as simplistic as possible. The initial application is completed online at www.ssa.gov. A week or so after the application is completed the applicant will receive some paperwork to complete and return. As of this year, even the appeals process can be completed online. If you have not hired attorney, simply fill out the form ad click submit to appeal. If you have hired a lawyer, let them complete the form as wording and specifics are important to winning your case.

I Can’t Work and Receive SSDI

There are a couple of instances in which you may work and simultaneously receive SSDI benefits. First, you are allowed to work as long as your conditions you claimed in your case permit it. You cannot earn more than $770 per month in a nine-month average, though, and you must let the SSA know what you are doing. The second instance is participation in the Ticket to Work Program. We’ve reviewed that program in this article: Ticket to Work


There you have it: seven myths about the Social Security disability program debunked. Perhaps you have more questions. Complete the form on this page and request a FREE disability case consultation. 



  Return to the Blog Home

About the Cochran Firm Disability Lawyers
Recognized as one of the nation’s premier law firms, The Cochran Firm handles cases on behalf of clients seeking a Personal Injury Lawyer, Criminal Defense, Medical Malpractice, Bankruptcy Attorney in Atlanta or Social Security Disability Lawyer.The Firm can be reached at 1-800-THE-FIRM (1-800-843-3476) or fill out the form on this page. “Working for You.” Article by Benjamin A. Irwin, Esq.



Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

There is no fee if you do not win your benefits!
Submit this form for a FREE evaluation.

Zip Code:
First Name:
Last Name: 
Phone Number: 
Email Address: 

By submitting your request, you grant the Cochran Firm Disability Lawyers permission to contact you using the phone and/or email address you provided. You agree that we may use an automatic telephone dialing system even if the number you provided is a wireless phone number.
These fields are present to prevent automated submission systems. If you see it, please do not fill in a value.