Filing for Disability in LA
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSD) provides benefits for those who cannot work due to injury or illness. If you are a resident of Louisiana and have been out of work at least a year because of a medical condition, you may qualify to collect disability. To do so, you will need to meet a few other requirements, including earning the requisite work credits and having a condition eligible to receive SSD. The next step is actually filing for the benefits. We’ve put together this in-depth guide to assist you with this process.
Steps for Applying for Social Security Disability in LA
Filing for SSD in Louisiana has four possible steps:
- Initial Application: You can file your application over the phone by calling 800-772-1213, in person at your local SSA office or via the Social Security website. It generally takes three to four months to hear a response to an initial application.
- Hearing: Both nationally and in Louisiana, 68 percent of disability applications are denied. Unlike other states, Louisiana does not require people to submit a request for reconsideration, which means you can get to the next step much faster. Appealing this decision means requesting a hearing, which will take an average of seven months to schedule. While that may sound like a long time, it’s much quicker than in other states. At the hearing, a judge will question you about your condition and your employment history. The judge will hand down the decision within 30 days.
- Appeal Review: About half of hearings result in an unfavorable decision, which means you may want to file an appeal requesting the government to reconsider the application. It takes about 60 days to appeal, basically asking the appeals review to determine that the hearing judge made an error. Very few cases are appealed successfully.
- File Disability Case in Federal Court: Each disability case is different, and most do not end up in federal court. This is the last resort and generally means your case involves a complex legal issue. An attorney must represent you in a federal case.
Where Are SSD Hearings Held, and Who Determines If I Am Eligible to Receive Disability Benefits?
Hearing offices for the SSD filing process in LA are spread out around the state and located in:
- New Orleans
Disability Determination Services maintains three offices located in:
- Baton Rouge
- New Orleans
It can feel frustrating knowing the decision on whether to grant you disability is taken out of your hands and left up to someone who doesn’t know you. You want to ensure you make the right steps in your case to receive a favorable decision. Hiring an attorney to represent your interests can assist you with this goal. An experienced social security disability lawyer, such as the ones at Irpino, Avin & Hawkins Law Firm, understand the SSD system and know what to do to assist you with your case.
Applying for disability can help protect your family’s long-term interests. Reach out to us today to schedule an initial consultation about your SSD case.