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Should I Apply for Disability Screenshot 1 Should I Apply for Disability if I have a disability?

The Odds: Getting Your Social Security Claim Approved

Should I Apply for Disability Screenshot 1 Should I Apply for Disability if I have a disability?

Should we start with the good news or the bad?  The chances are that if you are coming across this post, you are in one of three situations.  And you are curious about your chances of getting your Social Security Claim Approved.  These three situations being…

You are considering a filing a claim for social security ( SSI or SSDI).

Or, you have filed and wanted to know your chances.

Or maybe, you have been denied and wondering if you should appeal.

The Bad News

Let’s start with the bad news.  The Social Security appeal process is long, frustrating, and overly complicated at the best of times.  Unfortunately, we are most certainly not in the best of times right now.

Part of the reason for the long wait is a record number of claims awaiting appeal hearings.  One might argue this is because claims themselves are at an all-time high.   Another might say the  ~70% initial denial rate reflects a system that doesn’t work except for those willing AND able to stick through it to the end.

In fact, the list of reasons why this process doesn’t work is too long to discuss in this format.   But we can discuss the best and clearest way to even the tables and ensure the best possible chance of getting a successfully granted claim or appeal.

The Good News

The good news is, the best thing you can do to set yourself up for a successful claim also helps you to answer question #3 above.

Question: “Should you appeal?”

Answer: “Yes!”

Wayne Gretzky once said, “you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” You would be amazed at how true this is in Social Security, let me demonstrate.

You can see from the graph/data below; you have at best a 50/50 chance of getting your Social Security Claim Approved at any part of the claims process.  In most cases, your chances are significantly smaller.  But with each stage, some are approved, which means, the averages move too.

At this point, it appears that your chances at any place in the process of getting your Social Security Claim Approved are pretty small.  But there is some light at the end of the tunnel.   Let’s look at this data a slightly different way.   Assume there are two pools.  A red pool of denials and a blue pool of approvals.

At the initial application stage, approximately 70% are denied outright. So, 30% of applicants, getting what they sought are in the approval pool, and 70% are in the denial pool.

Denials vs. Approvals at the Initial Application Stage

 Upon reconsideration, another 10% of the 70% that are still in denials is added to the Social Security Claim Approved pool.

Denials vs. Approvals at the Initial Reconsideration Stage

The pools are getting closer in size. 

This next step is where things actually turn upside down.  Depending on where you live, and the ALJ’s your approval rate at the appeal hearing will vary.  For instance, in Spokane, the ALJ award rate is around 60%.  In comparison, in Seattle, the award rate is about 44%.  Let’s take the mean and say you have a 50/50 chance at this point.   You see that for those who have stuck with their claim this far, the chances are better than not of being granted their claims.

Another Way to Look at It

Let’s consider a similar situation.  You have a six-sided die, you roll a 6, and you are awarded, you roll a 1 through 5, and you are denied.  You have three rolls to be awarded; we’ll call  these rolls:

The Initial Claim roll,  the Reconsideration roll, and the Appeal roll.

On the initial claim roll, you have a (1 in 6) 17% chance of getting a 6.

For the reconsideration roll, you have a 1 in 6 chance again, but your chances of having rolled a 6 in one of two rolls at this point come out to 31%.

And on the appeal roll, you have another 1 in 6 chance.  However, you are rolling a 3rd time, so your chances of having rolled a six by the end of this roll are growing.  You now have a 42% chance of having rolled a 6 by the end of this turn.

Likelihood of Winning Social Security Appeal

Conclusion: Stay in the Fight!

Do you see how it makes a difference remain in the fight?!  Staying in the claim through the appeals process is possibly the most significant aspect of your claim associated with a positive outcome.

Of course, the problem with numbers is they don’t do justice to the human story behind these decisions.  Every denial is emotionally taxing and draining on those who have been denied.  It’s not easy to fight Uncle Sam; it’s daunting and scary.  It’s also, often difficult to pursue a claim that can take years to finish.

These reasons are all predicated on you bringing in the help that is experienced and successful.  This help means retaining an excellent Social Security Disability law firm.  Help that both drastically improves your chances of success at each stage and ensures your claim stays alive as long as possible.

Contact US To Fight For You!

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    Randi L. Johnson, Lilac City Law, Estate Planning, Social Security Disability, VA Disability

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      I don’t know really where to start in order to cover the magnitude of professionalism, understanding, persistence and compassion Lilac City law showed me. From Randi to each one of her staff-they worked very hard on my case and pushed me to keep fighting in the midst of several set backs from disability. They were always atop of communicating with me and all others involved. I highly recommend them and not just because I received a favorable decision but because of the plan they executed; so even if the results were unfavorable-I would still not hesitate knowing I chose the right practice. Thank you for you compassion and patience😊
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      Don't remember exactly when I first met with them, but they were absolutely amazing to work with and only took a few months for my disability claim to be approved.I highly recommend Lilac City Law.
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      Wow, these guys were so nice and easy to work with. It ended up that they couldn’t help us with what we needed, but the gentleman we worked with went above and beyond my expectations, and more. I could tell that they really care about people there, not just cases. He was super patient in explaining things to me when I didn’t understand, it wasn’t a stressful experience as I thought it would be. Thanks for everything guys!
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      Lilac City Law is an incredible firm! I had the pleasure of working with the amazing team at Lilac City Law for nearly 2 years. Their team is absolutely remarkable! They are extremely knowledgeable, helpful, and overall compassionate when it comes to working with their clients. I sought their assistance nearly 2 years ago and have continued to work with them. I had a great deal of interaction with more than just one member of the Lilac City Law team and therefore can attest to the fact that this group of individuals is absolutely unparalleled. Attorney, Randi Johnson, is an exceptionally skilled lawyer as well as an overall remarkable woman! Her support staff is incredible as well, including Cassandra, Pam, Marissa, David, etc. with all of them by your side you have been blessed and are going to receive the best results possible. I would absolutely recommend seeking assistance from this law firm, as they have the ability to change lives; they definitely did mine. Thank you all so, so much!
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      Lilac City Law went above and beyond to help my partner get her SSI. My partner had been trying to win for 12 years and finally won. We can't say thank you enough. Thank You Randi and team for all you have done.
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      Randi and team are amazing! We previously had our will and other documents prepared by another firm in the Seattle area where we are from. I met with Randi to update areas of my trust and was soooooo impressed with how much more she provides than the firm who first helped me. I love the short term care directive that she provides and think it is amazingly thoughtful!! Thank you so much Randi Johnson!!
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      I had a great experience with Randi and her team this past year when we worked with them to create our first-ever wills and trust. Planning for your untimely death and discussing personal finances aren't always fun topics, but we were appreciative of Randi's approach to these potentially uncomfortable conversations and especially liked the recorded legacy interview she conducted with us. Total 5-star experience!
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      Parents are so intentional about so many aspects of their children's lives. Few will forgo putting together a will. But, what if you don't die? What if you are just incapacitated? Are you prepared for the unexpected? Are you leaving your children at risk? If someone else does raise them, do you know that they will be raised according to your wishes? Have you even thought through what your wishes are? All these questions and more will be covered in the process of completing a Family Protection Plan with Randi Johnson at Lilac City Law. Having our Family Protection Plan in place gives me an incredible sense of comfort and peace of mind. I highly recommend Randi and the staff at Lilac City Law. Hopefully you never need her services, but isn't it better to be prepared than to leave things to chance?
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      I became ill over two years ago now,at the age of 29.. I experienced seizure like movements that lasted for hours or even days at a time. The doctors were at a loss for a diagnosis so they called it a mental disorder. As I was unable to care for myself most days or work, I applied for social security and was denied. I sought the help of Lilac City Law, and was immediately greeted with compassion and action. My case was a hard one to win or prove. Amy Santa helped me and explained everything to me step by step.. She ALWAYS answered my questions and showed immense sympathy for all I was going through. My case went to trial and Amy was amazing in court and won me the benefits I so desperately needed. This process was so difficult and overwhelming on my own.. I couldn’t have done it without these amazing people and thanks to them I can focus on improving my health,and not worry about my family struggling. I’m thankful and very blessed to have had them on my side! Sincerely, Ashley Schauble
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      This has been an awesome experience from beginning to end. Randi and her team were super helpful in helping us wrestle through all the aspects of our estate plan. Randi’s knowledge of estate and wills were very obvious from the beginning and we are thankful for her and her staffs expertise. Thank you so much!
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      I needed to get my husband's advanced health directive for a procedure he was having and it was so easy to find in our perfectly tabbed out legal binder. I found it right away, made a copy and stored it right back in the binder. Thanks for making us get it, and for making it easy to find and understand.
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      I highly recommend this law firm. They have the experience and skills to help people with their plans and their future. From their work with others, they take a pragmatic approach to law and don't over complicate things unnecessarily. With that said, if a matter is complex they are very capable of handling it.
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      Randi demonstrates a beautiful balance of expertise and compassion while dealing with difficult circumstances. I'm very thankful we had her in our corner! I can't reccomend her strongly enough.
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      Randi and her staff are the best! They help you with your case and are there if you have any questions.I highly recommend them!
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      Randi did a wonderful job of asking simple questions to help us determine exactly what type of trust we needed to match our goals. Thank you so much, Randi, for taking time out of your busy schedule to get us were we need to be!
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      Such a great meeting today with Randi. Tell me who wants to talk about wills and final arrangements, right? Well, my husband and I did this today and Randi, you made it easier than we expected. What a blessing to work with such talent and know you have our backs. Between you and Cary Wong. We will be sitting pretty, no matter what life brings us. THANK YOU!
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      Randi are her staff are amazing! They are all very knowledgable, helpful and passionate about serving others. Every step of services are explained clearly and follow-up exceeded expectations. In addition, Randi is active in the community and regularly volunteers her time and talents putting on presentations focusing on educating others on specific topics. She has a passion for assisting those with special needs or situations. For legal assistance with heart, Lilac City Law is highly recommended!
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      Randi was an excellent attorney. Her staff was excellent as well. I was treated with kindness, compassion and dedication towards winning my complex and difficult case, which ultimately happened. I am very happy that I chose Lilac City Law to represent me. I would highly recommend them!!!
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