November 13, 2017 Were you recently injured at work in Oklahoma and considering your options for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits? Generally speaking, an injured worker may be eligible to receive adult disability benefits if she cannot work due to a medical condition that is expected to last at least 12 months or to result in her death. Applying for disability benefits is a complicated process, and many people who are eligible are denied benefits the first time around. In those cases, it is extremely important to work with an Oklahoma disability benefits lawyer to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. However, as a recent article in Marketplace.org discusses, many Americans who have been denied benefits initially and have appealed those decisions face extremely long wait times that leave them without benefits for which they may indeed be eligible. Administrative Backlogs and Hearing Requests In short, as the article explains, “Americans seeking Social Security disability benefits face massive administrative backlogs and long wait times.” To be sure, more than one million people are waiting to learn about whether their application for a disability hearing request will be granted. How long is it taking, on average, to learn about whether a person will even be eligible for an appeal? On average, the wait time for processing a Social Security disability appeal is 602 days—or nearly two years. Are these processes really so complex that there is any excuse for the extended wait times? To learn a bit more about the process, an initial application for SSD benefits can be approved or denied. In the event of a denial, the applicant can seek a reconsideration determination. If the applicant also disagrees with the decision from the reconsideration determination, then she can request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. Even if this decision does not turn out in favor of the applicant, there are additional appeal options. Importance of Working with an Oklahoma Disability Benefits Attorney The extremely long wait times for appeals emphasize the importance of getting your application right the first time. We Are Here To Help If you have questions about filing for Social Security Disability benefits, it is extremely important to work with an Oklahoma disability benefits attorney to ensure that you will not need to appeal. In the event that you have been denied benefits, you should seek advice from an advocate as soon as possible. Our firm can help with your initial application or your appeal case today. Contact Lobaugh Law to learn more about the services we provide to Oklahoma residents.