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The Single Most Important Improvement to the Social Security Disability Claims Process is Coming Soon

By Karl Kazmierczak

November 15, 2007

 

 

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Recently, I was present at a meeting of the SSA designers of a program that would allow lawyers and claimants to access their Social Security Disability file through the internet. In my opinion, when this program is implemented it will be the greatest improvement in the Social Security process ever.

 What this means for lawyers and claimants is that they will be able to access the SSA file instantly. There are several advantages to this over the old system of doing things.

First, as soon as I take on a client I will be able to access the file and see what SSA has in the file and what I think is missing from the file. The way it is now it can be extremely difficult to get this information which leads to delays in developing the file. This will also save the client money because a claimant will only have to try and get records that are missing from the file which will cut down on having to pay for records that are already in the file.

Second, a lawyer can write briefs to SSA at any stage in the process and be able to point to specific exhibits in the file that support disability. That brief can be submitted directly into the file.

Third, SSA employees should need to spend less time developing the file since lawyers with direct access to the file will be able to better help in that development.

Fourth, a lawyer will be able to know were in the process a claim is at a moments notice instead of having to send numerous letters to SSA to check the status of a case.

Fifth, the electronic system of access to the file and being able to submit evidence directly into to the file will eliminate the mail processing time. This might not seem like much but try to imagine the hundreds of thousands of claims and the amount of mail associated with each of those claims. Each piece of mail has to be opened and scanned in to the appropriate file. All those hours of processing time and money spent on postage will be eliminated both for the law offices and SSA.

Lastly, because of the huge case load SSA employee’s deal with they often miss or have not started reviewing files that are really strong and deserve a quick favorable decision. With direct access to the file a lawyer will be able to point this out to the decision makers at SSA to get a faster decision. I strongly believe this new program will decrease processing time at every stage of the process. It will also save money for SSA, lawyers and claimants. Most importantly it will lead to better developed files and therefore, better decisions.

For more information on related topics see my Free Social Security Disability Guide.

 

 

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