What are the steps involved in filing for Social Security Disability?

A person who becomes ill or injured and, as a result, is unable to work should take the following steps to apply for disability benefits:

  1. First, get medical care and make sure you clearly document your medical condition.
  2. File an application with the Social Security office. When to file a claim depends on many factors. The key is that your disability must prevent you from working for at least 12 consecutive months. That year can have passed or be in the process of passing. You can file by phone, mail, or in person.
  3. Your application will be sent to Disability Determination Services (DDS). Based on your medical data and your application, DDS will determine if you are qualified. If they need more medical information, you may be asked to undergo an examination. These medical exams can be quick and superficial.
  4. Once DDS makes a decision, you will receive a written notice. If you’ve been denied, the notice will state why.

The Social Security disability benefit system is one of the most complicated and confusing of all the federal bureaucracies. You only have two months (60 days) to take action after you receive your initial denial notice. If you fail to appeal the denial, you could lose all of your rights.

We handle Social Security disabiity claims every day, but we know this is not an everyday experience for you. We will guide you through every step in the process. Our Social Security disability lawyers and our professional staff will get to know you and your situation well, because the better we know you, the better we can represent you.

Don’t delay. Contact our law firm today to arrange a free consultation and case evaluation. Call our main office toll free 800-525-2099.

Oregon Social Security Disability Attorneys at the Law Offices of Black, Chapman, Petersen & Stevens represent clients throughout Oregon, Northern California and the entire United States.


If you have a personal injury, workers' compensation, social security disability, elder or nursing home abuse, or sexual abuse case, please contact Black, Chapman, Petersen & Stevens by filling out the form below. The consultation is free and we only receive compensation if we obtain benefits for you.


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