Individuals in California may ask for disability benefits if they have a mental or physical condition that prevents them from obtaining a gainful living. Generally speaking, applicants who have had their applications denied will hear back in a relatively short period of time. This is because they only have 65 days to file an appeal. Typically, it takes at least one appeal before an application is approved, and it is not uncommon to appeal twice before this happens.
If a claim is approved, an individual can expect to receive an approval notice within a few days. About 70 percent of initial claims are denied, and about 80 percent of claims are denied at the initial reconsideration level. If claims are denied at both of these levels, it may be possible to have the case heard before an administrative law judge.
It is important to note that individuals who have their claims approved after a hearing with a judge will not receive benefits right away. This is because the judge has to write out his or her decision and send it for processing. From there, an approval letter can be written and sent to an applicant. Those who are eligible for disability benefits may be subject to a waiting period of five months.
Individuals who have a physical or mental injury that keeps them from working on a regular basis may be entitled to compensation from the government. The type of compensation a person receives may depend on his or her work record and net worth. A legal professional may be able to help a person gather evidence of an impairment or fill out Social Security Disability claim paperwork. If necessary, such a professional may prepare an individual for a hearing in front of a judge.