There were 2 pigs who lived together on a farm.

One of the pigs was quiet and never missed a meal, but he did not over eat. He also listened to the older pigs who gave him advice about how to behave on the farm and explained what the farmer was like.

Another pig liked to live large and loud. He ate his own meal and some of his fellow pigs meals. He liked to throw around his weight. He scoffed at the other pigs advice. He also thought that he ran the farm, and not the farmer.

Market day came and the farmer looked over the pigs and the large, loud pig caught his attention and off he went in the farmer’s truck.
The other pig eyes got a little larger and he moved to the back of the herd of pigs.

Sometimes it takes a little wisdom to win your Social Security Disability case.

It certainly helps to listen to people who know their way around the process.

Many people do not understand that you can get important advice and guidance from a Social Security Disability lawyer without any upfront fees.
A lawyer only gets paid if you win your case and there is a limit on the amount that can be paid the lawyer.

It makes no sense to go in a courtroom before a Judge without help.

I saw a recent decision involving a person without a lawyer and the Social Security Judge took great advantage of the claimant.
It was as if the person wandered into a slaughter house. An experienced disability lawyer would have been able to guide the client and point him in the right direction.

Questions about your Social Security case? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability lawyer Dirk May with Williams and Swee at 309-827-4371.

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Social Security Disability has some pitfalls for the unwary.

They can make the difference between winning and losing your case.

One area problem area is skilled work in the last 15 years of your employment.

If the Social Security Judge believes you are able to perform any of your jobs in the past 15 years or that you have transferable skills learned in these past 15 years, then you are not disabled.

This can present a major problem for people who have had a college degree or who have developed on the job skills over a number of years.

Back or leg problems may limit you to a sit down job, but the Judge may believe you can continue with a skilled job because many of these positions can be performed in the seated position.

The key to proving that you cannot perform past relevant work at the semi-skilled or skilled level or being able to transfer your skills to another job is showing impaired concentration.

This can be done through treatment for depression, anxiety, memory problems, or chronic pain.

Symptoms from these conditions can reasonably be expected to interfere with concentration, persistence, pace and remaining on task.

You should treat consistently with a doctor, psychiatrist or counselor and describe your complaints and limitations as a result.

This will show that you are having limitations in these areas.

Any former employers who are able complete forms or write letters to describe problems you had on the job will also help.

Questions about how to best present your disability case? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Lawyer Dirk May with Williams and Swee at 309-827-4371.

Your Social Security Disability hearing will last approximately one hour.

Most Administrative Law Judges will not tell you their decision at the time of the hearing.

This is because the law requires that the decision about your disability be in writing.

It usually takes about 30 to 45 days for the decision to put in writing and mailed to you. However, there are no set timelines within which the Judge must issue a decision. If the time seems to be unusually long you can contact the hearing office and ask for the status of the decision.

The decision will either deny your disability, grant your disability, or give you a partially favorable decision.

A partially favorable decision means that you are granted disability but with a different onset date than you alleged in your application.

Or it can mean that you were disabled for a period time but are now able to work.

If you disagree with the Judge’s decision you can appeal it the Appeals Council.

The Council acts much like a court of appeals.

It will usually takes 12 months for the Appeals Council to rule on your appeal.

If you are denied, then you also have the right to reapply for Social Security Disability benefits in most cases.

Questions about your disability case? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

It can take a long time to find out if you are eligible for Social Security Disability.

From start to finish (from application to a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge) it can take up to 20 months in Illinois.

Some cases take less time such as 4 to 5 months, but this does not happen very often.

If you cannot work, then you have no choice but to apply and go through the long process and prove that you are disabled so that you can get your monthly payments.

Your only other choice is to get a job.

If you can work full time, then you are not eligible for disability.

If you can work only part-time, then you can still be eligible for Social Security Disability (part-time work is making less than $1,000 a month gross).

The wait is terrible because you are in poor health and the stress of being without a job and income is great.

I am glad to help people from start to finish in the Social Security Disability process. This includes filing the application online, completing questions from Social Security, getting you ready for the Social Security Doctors’ appointments, preparing you for the hearing, and going to the hearing with you.

Applying for disability is not something you should do alone.

There are too many pitfalls.

All attorney fees depend on whether or not you win.

If you do not win you owe nothing.

If you win you only have to pay 25 percent of the back benefits you win with a cap of $6,000.

A lifetime of benefits for this small amount is worth it.

Questions about your disability? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

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This probably is the result of more denials also.

Central Illinois is experiencing some delays in the review of claims, but it also is denying a large number of claims.

An experienced Social Security Disability lawyer will be able to help you get your disability. Make sure to call me if you have any questions.

Once you reach the Social Security Disability hearing stage, the decision maker is the Administrative Law Judge.

The Judge determines the credibility of the witness (that is you).

Credibility is basically whether you are believable.

In most cases your truthfulness or credibility will be a major part of whether or not you win your case.

Here are some of the things that the Administrative Law Judge will look at in determining whether you are believable.

Your past work history can be very helpful to you.

Have you worked full time for a good number of years?

This shows that you valued work and worked as long as you could.

Your medical records can support your credibility.

Do they detail your complaints of pain and attempts at treatment?

Do your medical records show that you have ongoing and long standing limitations?

Your testimony at your Social Security Disability hearing is a major part of your credibility.

Does what you are telling the judge make sense?

If you are overly dramatic or exaggerate, then you are not helping yourself.

For instance, your testimony may be that you are able to do some types of things around the house, but you probably need to take rest breaks while doing your chores.

For instance, your testimony may be that it is likely can do some work for a short period, but not for the length of time and at the productivity levels necessary to work a full time job.

Questions about your disability case? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

It is getting very difficult to win a Social Security Disability case.

The reason is that there is a backlash against the large number of filings and media reports of some judges in the past who have approved high percentages of cases.

Throw in the political climate of high budget deficits and scare tactics of Social Security running out of money.

This leads to some very tough times for people who applying for Social Security Disability.

It means you must be very vigilant in making sure that your case is as strong as it can be.

No drug use or alcohol abuse. If you have had a problem, then get treatment.

Go to the doctor as often as you can.

Tell the doctor about your problems and limitations.

Cultivate a good relationship with your doctor so that they can explain in detail your problems and the restrictions they cause.

Be prepared to testify truthfully, credibly, and in detail about how your conditions affect your daily activities.

Know what the standard is for proving you are disabled.

Make sure you can question the Vocational Expert in a way that persuades the Judge that you are disabled.

Do not go it alone. There is no reason to go in without an experienced Social Security Disability Attorney. It does not cost you anything up front, and it can make the difference between winning and losing.

Questions about your Illinois Social Security Disability case? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.