Social Security Disability Claims

Our attorneys have the experience to handle Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claims at any stage in the process, from initial filing through the appeal process.
If your disability is keeping you from working and earning a livable wage for you and your family, you should consider applying for Social Security disability benefits. However, navigating through the Social Security claims process without proper representation can be difficult because of the high likelihood that a claim will be denied. Indeed, historically about 70% of first time applicants for benefits will receive a denial of benefits. Having proper representation is essential to obtaining the optimal results.

In order to be entitled to disability benefits under Social Security you must prove that you are severely disabled. In other words, you have to show that you have a physical or mental condition that prevents you from doing any substantial “gainful activity” (work) and will last at least one year or will cause your death. The Social Security Administration (SSA) evaluates disability claims using its own medical experts and claims examiners. If you are not prepared, your claim may be denied.

Applicants who based their claims on mental or emotional illness or disorders, like depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, or PTSD face additional obstacles. While these claims can be difficult to win, having counsel like the attorneys at CLC who understand the process and the evidence you need to support your case is the right move for you.

Call us now to evaluate your claim for benefits or discuss representing you in an appeal for benefits.

Veteran’s Rights

A veteran is someone who served on active duty in the military, naval, or air service and who was discharged or released from the service under conditions other than dishonorable. Reservists or Guardsmen who had been mobilized or called up for active duty are considered veterans.
Veterans: You’ve fought hard for us, let us fight hard for you. You and your family’s sacrifices entitle you to federal funded programs and monetary benefits. Our lawyers can help you identify potential veterans’ issues and navigate the complex VA appeals process.
VA Health Care
If you had active military service and you were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable, you may qualify for VA health care benefits. In some cases, Veterans are automatically enrolled in VA health care, and in other cases you will have to apply for health care. Complex and often confusing rules determine what priority you will be given for access to VA health care. If you’ve been denied VA health care benefits, contact us to help you get the benefits you deserve.

VA Disability Benefits
There are many types of VA disability compensation. They can be based on disabilities that existed when entering military service, but were made worse, disabilities that occurred during service, or disabilities that arose after you left military service. Also, there are claims that are filed for special circumstances.

The Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES) is a process for determining the level of military disability benefits the service member should receive. To assess disabilities through the IDES, a service member’s case is generally considered by two boards: a medical evaluation board (MEB) and a physical evaluation board (PEB). Once the VA decides which conditions make a member unfit for continued service or disabled, a disability rating is assigned to each unfitting condition by a VA rating specialist using the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD).
The benefit amount is graduated according to the degree of the Veteran’s disability on a scale from 10 percent to 100 percent (in increments of 10 percent).

A combined military disability rating of 30% or more entitles the service member to medical retirement benefits, which include lifetime monthly disability retired pay; lifetime military health care for the veteran, spouse, and minor children; access to military commissaries and post exchanges; and other retirement benefits. However, a service member assigned a combined military disability rating of less than 30% receives a lump-sum severance payment and no retirement benefits.

Call us for an evaluation of your potential disability benefits calculation or to represent you in a VA disability appeal.

Veteran Pension Benefits
The federal government offers two types of Veteran’s Pension benefit programs:

tVeteran Pensions
Wartime Veterans, aged 65 or older, may be entitled to tax-free pension. Additionally, disabled Vets who are receiving social security disability insurance or supplemental security income may be entitled to a tax-free pension.

Survivors Pensions
Low-income, un-remarried surviving spouse and/or unmarried child(ren) of a deceased Veteran with wartime service are also entitled to pensions. Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) is a tax-free monetary benefit generally payable to a surviving spouse or child(ren) of Servicemembers who died while on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training, or to survivors of Veterans who died from their service-connected disabilities. Parents may also be entitled to DIC if the parent was financially dependent on the Servicemember or Veteran who died from a service-related cause.
We can assist you in filing for pension benefits or represent you if your benefits have been unlawfully denied. Contact us for a free phone evaluation.t

Veteran Employment Rights
As a veteran, you may be eligible for preference in federal employment hiring and job retention.

Some veterans qualify for five-point preference. Five-point preference applies to veterans who served in a war declared by Congress or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign medal has been authorized. This is beneficial for veterans seeking employment with the federal government.

Other veterans may qualify for ten-point preference. Service-connected disabled veterans are eligible for a ten-point civil service preference. These disabled veterans include: permanently medically retired veterans; Purple Heart medal recipients; anyone with a VA-rated service-connected disability; and the mothers and spouses of deceased veterans and totally and permanently disabled veterans. Some veterans that are 30 percent or more disabled may also be eligible for a temporary noncompetitive appointment in federal positions that can be converted to a career position.
Vocational rehabilitation is another benefit that many veterans are entitled to. To be eligible for vocational retraining, a veteran must have at least a 20 percent service-connected disability or a 10 percent service-connected disability with a serious employment handicap. If a veteran meets these requirements, the VA should provide the veteran with suitable vocational rehabilitation services and a living allowance. The government should also provide the veteran with a stipend for higher education, technical school, a certificate program, or technical programs to assist the transition of a veteran into the civilian workforce.

Like civilian employees, disabled veterans are also protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

If you are a Vet and have been denied federal employment or vocational assistance, contact us to file a claim on your behalf.

Appealing VA Decisions
You have the right to appeal decisions made by the VA. You can appeal when you are denied disability compensation, pension, education benefits, coverage for medical services, or other benefits. You have one year from the date of the notification of a VA decision to file an appeal. Appealing VA decisions can be frustrating and time consuming. Hiring counsel to assist you is a smart investment in you and your family’s financial future. Call the attorneys at CLC today for an evaluation.