Dugan & Associates: Social Security Disability Lawyer in Uniontown, PA

It can be difficult to know if you qualify for benefits due to disability through the Social Security Administration (SSA). If you live with a disability that is eligible for benefits, you should receive financial aid. Unfortunately, most initial Social Security disability claims are denied.

Dugan & Associates aims to help you file a social security disability appeal. Filing for benefits can be a challenging process. Yet, the government denies people who are deserving of Social Security disability benefits. Since so many people are rejected, we want to help you fight for your benefits. 

Here are some of the most important things you need to know.


The SSA has two government programs that provide disability benefits. For people who are disabled, one must be classified as unable to work in any substantial gainful activity taking into account age, past work experience, severe impairments, and education. This means that SSA looks at your combination of impairments taking into account other factors as to whether you may be able to be gainfully and substantially employed.

Trying to discern between SSD and SSI can be difficult. Thankfully, our lawyers are here to help you through every step of the process. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can reach us at 888-99-D-U-G-A-N or by filling out a contact form on our website. 

Am I Eligible?

The terms that the SSA provides state that one must be unable to perform substantial gainful activity as a result of their (impairments) taking into account the other factors mentioned above . They apply three guidelines to all applicants:

  1. Are you performing substantial gainful employment, if not then
  2. Do you have a severe or combination of severe impairments, if yes then
  3. Do you meet or equal a listing, if no then
  4. Does your severe impairment(s) prevent you from performing past relevant work, if yes then
  5. Is there other work in the local and national economy you are capable of performing.

There are a few exceptions to these guidelines. These include people who are visually impaired. Even so, many peoples’ first claims are denied. This can make it difficult to know if you’re eligible for disability benefits. 

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI or SSD)

SSDI or SSD is based on disability and work earnings. With this program, Social Security taxes are deducted from your paychecks. These are accumulated over time and compared to your previously earned income.

Supplementary Security Income (SSI)

Benefits from SSI depend on limited assets and limited income. SSI usually applies to people who have never worked or have a very limited income. The government funds SSI from general tax revenues.

Options for Appealing a Denied Claim

If you file for benefits and your claim is denied, you’re not alone. Many people are denied upon their first claim, even if they deserve benefits. We are here to help you with the entire process. Once you’re ready to appeal, the process is time-sensitive and must be done within 60 days of the unfavorable notice of initial determination. If one files a reconsideration from the denial of initial determination likewise one only has 60 days from the notice of denial on reconsideration to appeal and request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge.

Dugan & Associates includes a team of well-experienced attorneys. 40 years of satisfactory customer service is embedded into each of our lawyers. If you are in need of a Uniontown Social Security Disability lawyer, we are here to help. We work with you and your medical team to earn as many benefits as possible. 

At Dugan & Associates, we aim to show SSA that you’re not a number. We take many things into consideration when determining eligibility. These include age, work experience, and severe impairments. We also work with everyone in your care team to figure out the best course of action. Since it is very common for initial claims to be denied, we can help you appeal your case.

Appeal Considerations

The process of appeals must start and must be filed within 60 days from the denial on initial determination and likewise one must file an appeal within 60 days from denial on reconsideration if the denial of initial determination is affirmed on reconsideration.

Although it can be challenging, our experienced lawyers are here to help you through every part of the process. Appealing a denied claim can include the following steps:

  • Request for Reconsideration: This applies to initial claim denial. When this happens, we will work with you to draft a request for reconsideration. This will outline a compelling, persuasive, and effective appeal.
  • Administrative Law Judge Hearing: This happens after a request for reconsideration is denied. In the case of a hearing, our lawyers are ready to help. They will work with you to prepare evidence and create a testimony. This will be presented in front of an administrative law judge (ALJ). 
  • Appeals Council: This step occurs after an ALJ denies your appeal. Even if this happens, there is still a chance to defend your benefits. Our lawyers can approach the Social Security appeals council and fight against that decision. 
  • Federal Court Appeal: If all other steps have failed, there is still one option left. The final opportunity for social security appeals takes place in federal court. Although this can seem daunting, our lawyers are well prepared for federal appeals. 

Always alert us of a denial of any kind. People with disabilities are often denied benefits, even if they deserve them. We want to help you get the assistance you need to make a healthy income. Having an experienced attorney represent your needs doubles your chance of success. This helps you focus on the things that matter the most. 

What If I’m Still Denied?

Hiring an attorney to represent a Social Security disability appeals case increases your chance of success. There are situations where you may be ineligible. But, the best thing to do is fight for your rights as a person with a disability. The highest appeals court would take it to the federal level, and our lawyers are well prepared for it. Even so, it is likely that an appeal of a lesser extent will give you the benefits you deserve.

Hire a Uniontown Social Security Disability Lawyer

Hire a social security disability attorney in Uniontown by partnering with Dugan & Associates. Our passionate team of lawyers have 40 years of experience. Our goal is to get you the social security disability benefits you deserve.

We understand how difficult the appeals process can be. Even so, we are ready to tackle any denials that come our way. Even if you’re not sure that you qualify for SSDI, our lawyers are happy to answer your questions. Also, our consultation sessions are always 100% free. 

To grant you the largest amount of disability benefits allowed, our lawyers use resilient strategies. Using the power of persuasion, our attorneys use their experience to show the SSA that you’re not just a number. Dugan & Associates wants to represent you so that you can focus on your family and quality of life.

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