Your Medical Records and Social Security Disability

What appears in your medical records will be absolutely critical for Social Security Disability. Why? The statutes and regulations governing Social Security Disability (SSD) provides ultimate authority on the determination if you meet the definition of disabled to the Social Security Administration. In making that determination, there is a review of your medical records of the medical providers that you provided on your application for benefits. Your medical providers document your visits to their office. Specifically, most medical records are…

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Mooney & Associates representing social security clients

Mooney Law helps clients apply for SSD benefits

Applying for Social Security Disability benefits can be confusing and complex. Besides the multitude of paperwork, it also includes providing medical records, wage information, employment information, and other information, for the Social Security Administration to be able to make an informative decision on your initial application for SSD benefits. At Mooney Law, we can help you with your initial SSD application. Do you have questions about whether applying for benefits is right for you? Do you have questions about the…

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Mooney Law: A Pennsylvania Disability law practice

Mooney Law represents clients throughout Pennsylvania and is a full Pennsylvania Disability Law practice. What do we mean by that? Representing Injured and Disabled clients throughout Pennsylvania At Mooney Law, we represent disabled clients in the following areas: Pennsylvania Workers Compensation: We represent injured workers throughout Pennsylvania. We have a full workers compensation litigation practice, from litigating denied injuries, to defending against employer petitions to terminate or suspend benefits, to litigating descriptions of injury, to obtaining a fair and reasonable…

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Social Security Disability is NOT an entitlement program

It really is a shame that Social Security Disability has such a stigma attached to it.  And there is.  There is that thought out there that people on Social Security Disability are getting nothing but 'hand outs' or 'entitlements' or 'welfare'.  It's our political world of uninformed opinions that grips our society today. Fact is, that workers have paid for these benefits through their payroll taxes over their entire career.   Just like you to pay into unemployment or car…

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Our Top 5 Social Security Disability Posts for 2017

As we sit at the doorstep to 2018, I want to provide you the top five posts from my blog this year in Social Security Disability (SSD). These posts I chose due to traffic and due to the information we provide to clients seeking SSD benefits.  If you missed them, well, link to them here.  Our firm represents disability clients throughout all of Pennsylvania and Maryland. That being said, here are the Top 5 Social Security Disability posts for this…

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After multiple denials, you can win Social Security Benefits

There is a misnomer out there that obtaining Social Security Disability (SSD) or Social Security Supplemental Income benefits (SSI) is easy.  We all 'know' a neighbor or friend that has SSD or SSI benefits, but hey, they look fine to me.  Remember one important thing, you don't know their story. Fact is --- it isn't easy.   Just take a look at these numbers.  The current approval rate at the initial application level is 36%.  That means if you apply…

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Social Security Disability COLA set by the Social Security Administration

The Social Security Administration has set a Social Security Disability COLA and other monthly benefit recipient.  This not only includes retirees, but also SSD and SSI recipients.  Unfortunately, the COLA amount is just .3%. The 0.3 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 60 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2017. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on December 30, 2016. The Social Security Act ties the annual COLA to the…

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What will be my Social Security Disability amount each month?

A common question that I am asked is what will be my social security disability amount of  benefits?  It is a question that I am frequently asked, and an important one, at that.  Most individuals I represent for Social Security Disability can no longer work because of their medical condition(s), so the amount of social security disability benefits is important to them. So how are amounts calculated? Online Help First, you can link over to the Social Security website and…

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Harrisburg Social Security Disability Office has long hearing wait, adds new Judges

I hear from every client their disbelief of the wait time to receive a hearing on their Social Security Disability appeal.  It is frightening for folks who have no income or limited income and can’t function normally or work. However, it is also a reality.  And, it is not just the Harrisburg Office of Adjudication and Review, which handles Social Security Disability appeals, that has the backlog wait time.  It is a national problem.

Mooney & Associates representing social security clients
Mooney & Associates representing social security clients

Here are the current numbers. (As of July 2016)

HEARING LOCATION HEARING WAIT TIME
Elkins Park, PA 20.0 Months
Harrisburg 19.3 Months
Johnstown 19 Months
Philadelphia 20.5 Months
Philadelphia East 20 Months
Pittsburgh 21 Months
Seven Field, PA 18 Months
Wilkes Barre 16.5 Months
Pennsylvania State Average 19.3 Months
Baltimore, MD 21 Months
NHC Baltimore 19 Months
Maryland State Average 20 Months

As you can see, the Harrisburg ODAR office is trending right near the Pennsylvania state average, but above the National average.  There may be some relief in sight though.  Harrisburg has recently added three new Administrative Law Judges, which should help reduce the wait time to around the National average.  Bottom line is, even with new ALJ’s on the way, if you have been denied Social Security Disability and you appeal, you SHOULD NOT expect to have a hearing for at least 16 months. (more…)

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SSD Quick Hitter: How long is the wait for a Social Security Disability hearing in Central PA?

This is the second in a series of quick hitter articles on Social Security Disability. When I meet with individuals who have applied for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits and been denied, one of the very first aspects I discuss with a potential client is the timing of an SSD hearing.  It is critical to impress upon each potential client that SSD is not a quick or easy way to get money when one is disabled. In South Central Pennsylvania,…

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