Social Security Disability FAQs

Our Chicago SSDI Attorneys Are Here to Help

The process of filing for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income can be incredibly complex. Many people have numerous questions about the process. If you are in need of disability benefits, you may be wondering whether you qualify for SSDI or SSI and, if so, the amount of benefits you are eligible to receive. If your claim has been denied, you may be wondering if there are any ways you can still receive benefits.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of our clients’ most frequently asked questions about Social Security Disability benefits. The goal of our Chicago disability lawyers is to provide you with the information you need to stay informed throughout the process. If you need help with your SSDI or SSI claim, we are here for you.

Don’t see your question here? Have questions about your specific case? Contact Woodruff Johnson & Evans Law Offices online or by phone at (866) 891-9211 today for a free consultation.

Social Security Disability FAQs

  • Do I need a lawyer?An experienced Social Security Disability lawyer can guide you through the red tape and make sure your case is properly presented. Statistics from the Social Security Administration (SSA) show that claimants who are represented by lawyers win more often than those without an attorney. Our SSDI lawyers in Chicago, Aurora, and Champaign have a strong record of obtaining favorable decisions from the local administrative law judges.
  • How much does it cost to hire an attorney for my disability case?Lawyers’ fees are limited to 25% of past due disability benefits up to a maximum of $6,000. There is no retainer fee or upfront costs. There is also no fee if you lose. Usually, there are some costs that must be repaid at the end of the case for obtaining medical records.
  • How long does it take to be approved for disability benefits?Some cases can be won on the initial application or at the reconsideration level, within a year of applying for disability benefits. However, most cases require a hearing before an administrative law judge, which can take up to three years. If you win your case, you will receive past-due disability benefits from the date you are found disabled.
  • If I win my case how much money will I receive?The amount you will receive will depend on the amount of past-due benefits you receive and your disability benefit rate, which will be different for every individual. The average disability benefit rate is $1,171.00.
  • Will I receive medical insurance?If you are awarded disability benefits, you will be eligible for Medicare coverage after a waiting period of 29 months from the date you are found disabled.
  • My doctor says I’m disabled. Why was I denied benefits?The Social Security Administration has a very specific definition of disability, which requires medical and vocational proof that you unable to work. While a letter from your doctor can be helpful in winning your case, it is not always enough. Our lawyers can work with you to ensure we have the necessary medical and vocational evidence to establish your disability.
  • How hard is it to win a claim for Social Security Disability benefits?This depends on your medical condition and the severity of your disability. However, in recent years the Social Security Administration has been denying cases at a higher rate, and there is no question that it is becoming more difficult to win cases. Our lawyers work hard to ensure we present the strongest cases possible on behalf of our clients. We have years of experience arguing cases before the Social Security Administration and we know what information the government is looking for.
  • My application was denied. Should I re-file or appeal the decision?We almost always recommend appealing any denial of disability benefits before the hearing. An appeal keeps your original application and claim for past-due benefits alive. Re-filing is a new claim, and you give up your rights to past-due benefits through the date of your last denial. In Illinois, after two appeals, your case will be argued before an administrative law judge. This is your best chance to present your case and all the evidence that shows your disability.
  • Isn’t Social Security going broke?Surprisingly, this is a myth. The Social Security Disability Trust Fund is fully funded through 2028. In 2016, the Trust Fund actually took in more than it paid in benefits. If this trend continues, the Social Security Disability program will be around for a long time.
  • Award
  • Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • AV Peer Review Rated
  • Super Lawyers
  • Leading Lawyers

Very Persistent and Very Honest!

After Mr. Evans took over my case, it didn’t take long to get results. I recommend Mr. Evans if you want to get results quick he very persistent and very honest with his clients.

Timothy A

He settled my case for more than I had expected.

Mr. Haugen is always so very kind and very involved with his client. He’s very attentive when it comes to his client relationship. Any questions I had for him were always answered in a very timely fashion, and explained very well. He settled my case for more than I had expected. Great Attorney! Highly Recommended!

Molly P

Thank you so much for great service and representation!

Attorney Russ Haugen was truly amazing. He kept in touch with me every time there was new information or changes with my case. The company he represents were very professional every time I called and responded back within a reasonable amount of time. I would recommend not only Russ Haugen to represent you, but the […]

Alexis W

Russ fought for me and I received more than double from the 1st settlement offer.

In July of 2018 I injured my back on the job. I was advised by someone to find a lawyer. I was given Woodruff Johnson & Evans Law Offices telephone number. I called and had a consultation with Russell Haugen. I knew nothing as far as what to do or expect. He was very informative […]

Sheryl D

Thank you, Jay Johnson, for all that you do. You are truly one of the good guys.

This is the second time I’ve needed the services of Jay Johnson, and it will be the second time that I am completely satisfied with Mr. Johnson’s performance. He thoroughly explains all aspects of a case and is always able to answer questions and concerns. I would recommend, and have recommended him, to other people […]

Richard V

Very glad I chose them for my lawsuit.

They were very professional with my case. They were patient and always kept me informed. Very comfortable environment. I was very glad to choose them for my lawsuit.

Matthew D.

Russell Haugen represented me, and he was absolutely amazing!

Excellent Law firm! Russell Haugen represented me, and he was absolutely amazing! He always checked on me and answered every phone call regarding my concern we settled for way more than I expected! He’s kind and considerate! I highly recommend Russell! He won’t let you down and God forbid but if I were to get […]

Samia L.

I was very pleased with this firm! Highly recommended!!

Not a fan of lawyers (previous encounters with different firm); but, I was very pleased with this firm and with Casey Woodruff. Answered my questions and addressed my concerns in a timely manner. Highly recommended!!

Dane S.

Honest conversation, personable team and timely responses.

Honest conversation, personable team and timely responses. Working with Mr. Evans and Cynthia has been a wonderful experience at a difficult time. Phone calls and emails are answered within a very reasonable time frame, each conversation is handled in a compassionate manner.

Deidre S.

DJ did a fantastic job on my auto-accident claim!

I highly recommend Mr. Dexter Evans, and the Woodruff law firm. DJ did a fantastic job on my auto-accident claim. I really appreciated all the detailed information provided, and finding medical assistance for me. It was awesome. All my questions were addressed properly and asap. I made my final decision with confidence. Over all the […]

Lilia G.
View All Testimonials

Get Your Free Consultation