Disability Process

Learn about the process for filing for Social Security disability or appealing a decision.

  1. RQP Law
  2. Social Security Disability
  3. Disability Claim Process

Helping you through the process of claiming and receiving the social security benefits you deserve

We are committed to guiding you through the intricate process of submitting a Social Security claim with precision and expertise. Navigating the complexities of Social Security benefits can be a daunting task, and our dedicated team of legal professionals is here to provide you with the support and guidance you need.

Whether you are filing for retirement, disability, or survivor benefits, our firm understands the significance of each case and is poised to assist you in every step of the way. 

Schedule a FREE consultation with our social security attorneys today.

What are the 4 steps for filing or appealing a social security disability claim?

Although you don’t have to have an attorney to win a Social Security Disability claim, it will more than double your chances of being approved when you have an experienced attorney in your corner. A Social Security Disability attorney can help you avoid potential pitfalls when filling out your application or appealing denials and can represent you before a Social Security Disability judge.

Attorney fees for Social Security Disability cases are set by law, allowing our firm to charge you nothing upfront and receive a percentage of your past-due benefits. A cap of $7,200 applies to how much our office will charge no matter how many hours we spend or how much work we do to get you approved. We don’t get paid unless you get approved for the benefits you need.

Applying for Social Security Disability

The Social Security Disability application can be daunting, especially for those hampered by physical or mental health conditions. It asks for information about your medical providers, hospitalizations, medications, work history and other personal information. The way you present this information can increase or decrease your likelihood of being approved for benefits.

Going through the application process can also be confusing and time-consuming. It often involves submitting medical evidence, medical opinions, work history information and functional capability forms, as well as being examined by independent medical examiners. That’s why it’s important to rely on an experienced Social Security Disability lawyer from the very beginning of your case.

Appealing a Social Security Disability denial

A majority of Social Security Disability applications are denied by the agency for a number of reasons, including:

  • Insufficient or missing medical evidence
  • A determination that the applicant can do other work
  • A finding that the applicant’s medical condition is expected to improve enough within a year of when it started to allow the person to return to work

Regardless of the reason, most denials should be appealed by applying for reconsideration. The agency will assign your case to a new decision-maker, who will review your claim and consider any new evidence you have to submit (such as updated medical records, forms the agency may not have received or new medical opinions from your doctors). Hiring an experienced law firm to help you through the reconsideration process is essential to making sure that anything missed or done incorrectly on your initial claim is handled properly as part of your appeal.

Appearing before an administrative law judge

Getting denied a second time after filing for reconsideration of your Social Security Disability application can be discouraging — but it’s important to be persistent and not give up. The next step in appealing your case is to attend a hearing before a federal administrative law judge. This is the first opportunity to truly present your case to someone in person (rather than just submit evidence and forms) and hope that they find in your favor.

While these hearings are much less formal than a traditional court case, it’s important to present your case in the light most favorable to you. This includes making sure that:

  • You know exactly what you need to prove your case
  • Medical evidence is submitted in a timely manner
  • You know how to answer the judge’s questions
  • Doctor’s opinions are included in your file

Preparing for a hearing is just as important as the hearing itself. Missing medical evidence or not knowing what testimony could hurt your case can torpedo your chances of being approved. That’s why it’s extremely important to have an experienced Social Security Disability lawyer in your corner to prepare you and the case.

Going before the Social Security Disability Appeals Council

Even judges can be wrong sometimes. That’s why the Social Security Disability appeals process includes appealing an administrative law judge’s findings to an arm of the Social Security Administration called the Appeals Council. The Council will look at whether or not the judge who decided your case followed the proper rule of law and/or if their decision is supported by the evidence. Appeals to this level should not be taken lightly; proving that a judge didn’t follow the law or that the decision is not supported by the evidence is a high burden that’s extremely difficult to meet without experienced legal help.

The attorneys at RQP Law have vast experience appealing administrative law judge decisions to the Appeals Council and know which arguments do and don’t work to have a judge’s decision overturned.

Understanding Social Security Disability


Learn the difference between social security disability and supplemental security income.

Submitting Claims Process

The social security claimes process can be confusing but we’re here to help.

Qualifying Coditions

Understand how to determine elgibility for social security disability claims.

Veterans Law

We are proud to support military veterans and help them claim the benefits they’ve earned.

Social Security Law resources from RQP Law

Schedule a FREE Consultation

The best way to confirm your Social Security disability eligibility is to seek the advice of an experienced law firm. At RQP Law, we can help determine your eligibility and build the strongest case around your situation to prove to Social Security why your condition qualifies you for benefits.

We are pleased to meet with you in our Pottstown, PA primary office or any of our satellite offices


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Ft Lauderdale, FL 33301
(954) 399-6400


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Annapolis, MD 21401
(410) 670-7367

New Jersey

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Princeton, NJ 08540
(609) 503-7355

North Carolina

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Suite 410
Charlotte, NC 28209
(704) 594-1876