California residents who are looking to file for social security disability benefits can do so online, by phone or at a local field office. However, it is best to do so in person whenever possible. Applying online could lead to uncertainty, and information received over the phone isn’t always accurate. Furthermore, an applicant can’t talk to a claims representative when filing online.

Having access to a claims representative often reduces the odds of making a mistake during the initial application or appeal process. If an applicant does choose to apply in-person, he or she will need to bring a picture ID. Otherwise, an applicant will need to go through an identification procedure. After that, applicants will be subject to an interview process that asks about any current medical conditions as well as any medications that they are taking.

An applicant will also be asked to talk more about their work history and any testing that has been done. Finally, individuals seeking benefits should be able to provide information related to any hospital or doctor who has treated them. Ideally, this will provide enough evidence to determine if a person should be granted benefits. Individuals may also be approved once their residual functional capacity rating is determined.

Disability benefits could be paid out to those who have been injured in an accident or have physical or mental limitations. If a person is denied SSD benefits after their initial application, they could appeal that ruling. An attorney can provide valuable guidance throughout the application or appeals process. In some cases, individuals may be entitled to benefits earned before an application was submitted.