Please note that Gade & Parekh, LLP remains open at this time during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are currently accepting new clients and are actively assisting our current clients with all ongoing case needs. Although we are unable to meet with clients in person at this time, we are happy to conduct appointments by telephone or video conference for the safety of our clients and staff. We remain dedicated in providing caring and personalized legal representation.

Sacramento Social Security Disability Lawyer

Comprehensive Social Security Disability Services

The Social Security Administration (SSA) makes it very difficult to file a successful application for disability benefits. It shouldn’t. But it does. By some statistics, nearly 75 percent of initial claims are denied.

At Gade & Parekh, LLP, we believe that people who are struggling with a disability need — and deserve — benefits. We are more than just a run-of-the-mill commercial application center. We take your Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim beyond full service.

What to Expect From Gade & Parekh

It’s natural to have lots of questions about Social Security benefits and the claim process. Whether you’re filing for benefits for the first time or have had a claim denied and need to file a Social Security disability appeal, an experienced Sacramento Social Security disability lawyer is the best asset you can have as you navigate these complex processes. The attorneys at Gade & Parekh have years of experience guiding clients through the Social Security system, and we will put this experience to work for you.

We start by providing a free comprehensive review of your claim. During your initial consultation, we will:

  • Answer your questions about your disability and options. Many people assume they qualify for Social Security disability benefits but do not realize they technically don’t meet the criteria; others may be unsure of the accurate level of benefits they qualify to receive. We’ll carefully review the details of your situation and let you know how our firm can assist you.
  • Clearly explain our full range of services. Gade & Parekh offers a wide range of legal services. Every case is unique, and you can expect our team to tailor our legal services to your individual needs.
  • Explain the contingency fee process. We know that most people cannot afford legal fees out of pocket, and your situation may require legal counsel that you might think you can’t afford. Contingency fee billing means that you pay nothing upfront and are only responsible for legal fees once we win your case. Your legal fee will be no more than 25% of your back benefits when you have been unfairly denied Social Security benefits, up to a maximum of $6,000.
  • Review and explain any previous correspondence you received from the SSA. Unfortunately, the SSA does not make it easy to understand its policies and procedures. However, you can rest assured that we will help you interpret all correspondence you’ve received from the SSA, so you understand your situation in the fullest detail possible.

The majority of the Social Security disability benefits cases our team handles pertain to denied claims for benefits. We know it can be incredibly frustrating to have your claim denied unfairly due to procedural issues or clerical errors when you know you have a qualifying condition.

Our Sacramento Social Security Disability Lawyers Can Help

You will be under no pressure to retain us as your licensed disability attorneys. If you are comfortable with our people, our services and our fees, we hope you will put your mind at ease and let us handle your claim for you. We know that it can be daunting to think of hiring an attorney to help you take on the SSA and its complex appeals process. Our goal is to provide you with the information and legal counsel you need to approach this process with clarity and confidence. Our team will handle the procedural issues your situation entails so you can rest assured knowing you are prepared to handle whatever the SSA has to say about your Social Security disability benefits claim.

Denied Claim? Don’t Give Up — We Don’t.

The SSA may deny a claim for benefits for many reasons. For example, they may cite a lack of supporting documentation from your medical care team that proves the full extent of your disability. It’s also possible that the SSA might deny a claim for benefits due to clerical issues or errors on the claim paperwork you’ve submitted. If your initial claim is denied, we take these steps on your behalf:

  • Review and address possible administrative reasons for the denial. Having a Sacramento Social Security disability attorney assist you in compiling your claim packet will significantly lower the chances of paperwork errors causing a denial of your claim.
  • File all necessary appeals, including filing for an administrative hearing. The SSA appeals process is multifaceted and complex. Our team will help you prepare for each phase of it.
  • Prepare you for, and represent you at, your administrative hearing. Appearing for any courtroom hearing can be incredibly daunting. Gade & Parekh will provide the coaching and guidance you need to feel confident during all of your administrative hearings with the SSA.
  • Appeal to the Social Security Appeals Council, if necessary. This is the final option for resolving a denied Social Security disability benefits claim when all other resolution options have proven fruitless.

Ultimately, Gade & Parekh can guide you through every stage of your interactions with the SSA, helping you obtain approval for the Social Security disability benefits you and your family need. Whether you’re applying for Social Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, we have the resources and experience to help you through this challenging situation.

Suppose you encounter further problems with your Social Security disability benefits after we resolve your initial claim. In that case, you can rest assured knowing you have a dedicated legal team that is already familiar with your situation and prepared to help you navigate whatever subsequent proceedings your situation entails.

What Are the Five Steps the Social Security Administration Takes to Determine Disability?

The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides benefit payments to millions of Americans each year. While some of these individuals collect benefits after retirement after paying into the Social Security system during their working years, others collect Social Security disability benefits after sustaining severe injuries or developing medical conditions that prevent them from working. The amount received in Social Security disability benefits and the timeframe that payments will continue fluctuate based on numerous factors. Additionally, the SSA enforces very rigid policies regarding the agency’s determination of disability for most claimants.

To qualify for Social Security disability benefits, a claimant must meet the SSA’s criteria for eligibility. The SSA determines eligibility for benefits using a five-step Sequential Evaluation process. If you are preparing to file for SSA benefits or have already done so and need to appeal a denied claim for benefits, it’s essential to know these five steps and what they entail so you can make informed decisions as you navigate the system.

Step One: Determining Substantial Gainful Activity

The first step the SSA takes in evaluating a claimant’s eligibility for Social Security disability benefits is reviewing any “gainful activity” the claimant currently performs. The term “gainful activity” is intentionally broad and generally applies to anything the claimant does for an income. For example, suppose the SSA evaluates a claimant’s finances and determines they are performing any work that generates pay or profit. In that case, they may decide the claimant does not qualify as disabled and will deny their claim for Social Security benefits. However, if the SSA sees that the claimant has not been performing any substantial gainful activity, they will proceed with the next step of their evaluation process.

Step Two: Assessing “Severe” Medically Determinable Impairment

A claimant seeking Social Security disability benefits must prove they have a medical condition or combination of medical conditions limiting their ability to perform basic work activities. SSA generally considers any condition “severe” if it causes any interference with the individual’s ability to perform basic work functions, and the SSA evaluates all related symptoms, including fatigue and pain, in evaluating a condition’s severity. Step two of the determination process also pertains to the anticipated duration of the claimant’s impairment. For example, suppose their condition and the related effects it has on their ability to work is expected to persist for more than one year or result in death. In that case, the SSA will likely qualify the condition as a severe medically determinable impairment.

Step Three: Listing Determination

The SSA eligibility rules uphold a catalog of “listings” that describe various disabilities. Therefore, the third step in the eligibility determination process is for the SSA to determine which listings apply to the claimant’s condition. If a specific impairment or combination of impairments fills the definition of a listing, the SSA will likely determine the claimant to be disabled and approve benefits. Some of the possible listings are very detailed, and an experienced attorney can help their client determine which listings are most likely to apply to their condition or conditions. Additionally, an attorney can be very helpful in gathering the evidence necessary for proving a claimant’s condition or conditions meet the definition of a particular listing.

It’s possible to qualify for multiple listings depending on the scope of your medical impairment and whether you struggle with multiple medical conditions. The SSA will likely want to review relevant documentation from your medical care teams and records that prove your medical condition or conditions have interfered with your ability to perform your previous job duties and secure alternative work.

Step Four: Past Relevant Work

Once a claimant has completed the first three steps of the sequential evaluation process, the SSA will then review the past work the claimant performed and determine whether they possess any “residual functional capacity” to perform those job duties. If the SSA determines that the claimant’s condition prevents them from resuming their previous job duties, the sequential evaluation process will proceed to Step Five. If the SSA determines the claimant retains the ability to perform their previous job duties, the SSA will deny the claim for disability benefits.

Step Five: Alternative Work Review

Social Security disability benefits are meant to support those who cannot work at all. If Step Four of the sequential evaluation process determines that the claimant can no longer perform their previous job duties, the SSA will then coordinate with a vocational expert who can determine whether the claimant can do any other work in any capacity. If Step Five of the sequential evaluation process determines the claimant cannot perform any alternative work, then the SSA will likely consider them disabled and approve disability benefits, potentially including back benefits applicable to the time they developed their condition and stopped working until the SSA approved their claim.

Approach the Sequential Evaluation Process With Confidence

Steps Four and Five of the SSA’s sequential evaluation process are the most likely to lead to a denial. Additionally, there is always a possibility of clerical or administrative issues leading to a denial, and a claimant may not know how to approach these demanding situations. Having an experienced Social Security attorney guide you through each step of the claim process will make it much easier for you and your family to secure the benefits you need when you are unable to work. Legal counsel for your initial claim will eliminate the chance for administrative errors delaying your claim or causing a denial. In addition, your attorney can help you gather the documentation you will need to prove the full extent of your medical conditions and prove they qualify under the SSA’s Listings.

Legal counsel from an experienced attorney will be essential if the SSA denies your claim for any reason. The appeal process is arduous and complex, and your legal team will help you gather all evidence you require to compel the SSA to reevaluate their decision to deny your claim. Finding the right attorney early in the claim process will prove to be an invaluable asset as you work toward securing the Social Security disability benefits you need.

Helping you obtain approval for the Social Security disability benefits you and your family need. Whether you’re applying for Social Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, we have the resources and experience to help you through this challenging situation.

After You Get Approved, We Are Still Not Through Helping

Most commercial Social Security application centers and other SSDI law firms stop their services when they collect their contingency fees after approval. The fact is, the SSDI and SSI process is ongoing — so we believe our services should be, too. We work with you and the payment centers to make sure you are paid promptly and correctly.

Suppose you encounter further problems with your Social Security disability benefits after we resolve your initial claim. In that case, you can rest assured knowing you have a dedicated legal team that is already familiar with your situation and prepared to help you navigate whatever subsequent proceedings your situation entails.

With several office locations to serve you better, we provide SSDI and SSI claims services for people throughout Sacramento County, Yolo County, Nevada County, Solano County, El Dorado County, and Placer County, California. Call us toll free or use our convenient email contact form to submit your questions and arrange a free consultation with an experienced SSDI lawyer at our firm.

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