In cases involving mental illness and injury, as well as cognitive deficits from brain injury, alcohol and drug use or long-standing problems with depression or anxiety, it is extremely important for claimants to seek the help of an experienced lawyer when filing an SSDI or SSI claim.
A lawyer's help is necessary because the process can be complex and because many people do not have much insight into their mental illnesses or conditions. Very frequently, people with these problems lack insight as to the nature of the underlying problem. For example, many people who are mildly mentally retarded are not aware that the condition was diagnosed when they were young or they were never evaluated for the condition and people just said they were "a little slow." With help from an experienced disability lawyer, claimants can ensure all of their mental health impairments are considered and evaluated. Claimants often face an uphill battle because simply having the illness is not enough. They must prove to the Social Security Administration (SSA) that their mental impairment or impairments prevent them from working.
At The Disability Law Office of Jeffrey S. Lichtman, LLC, my clients include people suffering from many different types of mental impairments, including:
- Depression or anxiety
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Bipolar disorder
- Schizophrenia/psychotic disorders
- Tourette's syndrome
- Obsessive compulsive disorder
- Panic attacks
- Cognitive impairments/mental retardation
- Alzheimer's disease and dementia
- Attention deficit disorders (ADD/ADHD)
- Personality disorders/intermittent explosive disorder
Oppositional defiant disorder
An Experienced Lawyer Is On Your Side
I practice exclusively in Social Security Disability law and have extensive experience working with persons with mental illness and cognitive disorders. I am dedicated to guiding your SSDI or SSI case successfully through the system. I handle initial disability applications and all levels of the appeals process. If you have a mental illness, I can help you obtain the cash and medical benefits you need.
The Disability Law Office of Jeffrey S. Lichtman, LLC, provides knowledgeable, experienced help to people during the process of obtaining SSDI or SSI benefits. My firm knows that working with doctors, therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists and other mental health specialists is vital to ensuring a successful claim. A doctor, therapist or other professional can help prove that your illness prevents you from working. Factors such as frequency of visits, types of medications, emergency room visits and hospitalizations, and any procedures undertaken are considered in your claim.
Understanding The Four Areas Of Functioning
Social Security will assess four elements of your functional ability to determine if your mental illness or condition is severe enough to prevent you from working. For mental illnesses or conditions, you must prove that you have severe problems in at least two areas of functioning. The four areas of functioning are as follows:
- Activities of daily living: This includes household tasks such as cooking, cleaning and shopping, personal hygiene and financial responsibility.
- Social functioning: Social isolation, difficulty getting along with family members or co-workers and supervisors, and other behaviors may indicate you would be unable to function in the workplace.
- Concentration: If you are unable to or have difficulty completing even simple tasks or projects, it may indicate you have deficient concentration and would be unable to hold a job.
- Decompensation: If you have incidents of "blowing up" in anger or inappropriate reactions to daily events and if you have had inpatient psychiatric hospitalizations, it may indicate you would be inability to work.
I have over 20 years of experience working with people with mental illnesses and conditions and am ready to help you.
You pay no fees unless I secure or reinstate your SSDI or SSI benefits. Call 215-731-1150 or toll free at 800-346-7600 for a free consultation with a lawyer. You may also contact us online.