Q: Does a claimant have to be denied benefits before he or she can hire a social security disability attorney?
A: No, a claimant does not need to be denied benefits first before he or she can hire a social security disability attorney. There is no requirement to hire a social security disability attorney during the review process, but the earlier you do it, the better chance your claim typically has. That is simply because of the experience and expertise an attorney brings to the table. The average claimant does not possess the knowledge base that a social security disability attorney has. An attorney knows what is needed to support a claim and how to obtain and submit all the evidence and documentation in a thorough and timely manner. An attorney can also trouble shoot, thus avoiding unnecessary delays or denial. Most any social security disability attorney would ideally like to represent a claim from step one of the process, although the most common time for a claimant to hire an attorney is after initial denial. If you wish to hire an attorney to help you apply, you may so.
Q: Does a claimant need to have been seen by a doctor recently?
A: Yes, in order to have a strong claim, an applicant should absolutely have recent medical records. The medical evidence provided on a claimant’s behalf provides the foundation for the claim. Without recent treatment, medical records and a supportive physician statement, a claim will not have hope of being approved for benefits. If you need help finding a doctor or do not know what type of care to seek to support your claim, it would be wise to speak with a social security disability attorney.