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The Initial Application and Reconsideration

The fastest way to complete a New York or Connecticut Social Security disability claim is to fill out the form online. If, like most applicants, you choose to submit the form in person or by telephone, you must start the process by calling the Social Security Administration at (800) 772-1213. The teleservice center staff there will be able to make an appointment for you to either receive a telephone call from or have an in-person interview with an SSA representative from your local office. In both the telephone and the in-person interview, the representative will ask you for the basic information needed to fill out an application for Social Security disability benefits. After that is done, you will be required to sign the form so that it can be submitted. If you are applying in person, you will be able to sign and submit then, but if you are applying via telephone, you will have to wait for the form to arrive in the mail for your signature before you can sign and return it.

After you have submitted your initial application, the SSA will not be the entity making the medical determination as to whether you are disabled or not. The agency of the  state government that has a contract with the SSA for determining disability handles all initial claims as well as  reconsiderations. At the state agency, both a medical doctor as well as disability examiner (a layperson) will evaluate the claim. Their determinations for both your initial claim and reconsideration, if applicable, will be the ones used by the SSA.

If your initial determination is that you are not qualified, and you live in New York,  you should request a hearing with an administrative law judge.  (Under a currently effective pilot program, initial disability denials in New York State do not  pass through the reconsideration step.)

If  you receive an initial denial in Connecticut, you must apply for  reconsideration.A different doctor-examiner team will take care of the reconsideration, but because they use the same criteria as used to make the initial determination, their ruling will likely be the same. If you are denied for a second time, you

You can greatly increase your odds of success at  reconsideration or  hearing by contacting a New York disability attorney. For a free evaluation of your claim, call Herbert Forsmith at (212) 809-1772 or (845) 278-2896.