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How to Get Approved for SSDI the First Time You Apply

How to Get Approved for SSDI on the First Application

Most applications for disability insurance can require two or three years before you receive a decision. However, it's possible to speed up the process and increase the likelihood of a favorable ruling in a shorter timeframe.

Nothing is certain, and every case is different. If you take the time to improve the quality of your application upfront, though, you might even receive approval in less than a year. Here are some frequently asked questions about ways to speed up your application for SSDI in Arkansas.

How can my doctor help?

Your doctor can help you first by documenting your condition. Having your medical records accessible will be necessary to complete a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) form. The Social Security Administration needs this form to evaluate the functional capacity of a disability applicant.

However, your doctor may need help from you to complete the RFC. Some doctors may require you to supply the RFC form and provide a template for the accompanying disability letter. Some doctors may have a policy that bars them from completing disability paperwork. You may need to seek assistance from multiple physicians.

How can my family help?

Family members can help by going with you to appointments, helping with follow-ups, and doing the legwork of collecting medical records and completing the RFC. Family members can also accompany you to your doctor appointments and document your visits, so you have current information from your doctor for reference.

How can my social worker or caseworker help?

A social worker or caseworker can provide some information required for the RFC, but they often don’t have the training needed to produce all of the required information without outside assistance.

How can I do this myself?

If you have the time, focus, and resources, you can complete the RFC and gather the supplemental information needed to expedite your disability application. You will need to work with your doctor, a nurse practitioner, or another medical professional to complete the RFC. You will also need to gather any additional paperwork to help expedite your application. After submission, you will need to follow up with your SSDI Disability Examiner to keep tabs on your application.

What if I’m homeless or at risk of becoming homeless?

Homeless persons or persons at risk of homelessness can reach out to their local SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) program. SOAR is a free program that will align homeless or at-risk persons with the resources needed to complete an RFC and help guide them through the SSDI application process.

How can an attorney help?

Disability attorneys are useful for explaining and guiding you through the application and submission process. Attorneys are frequently consulted later in the application process or for a denied application.

Arkansas SSDI hearings and appeals are where you benefit most from an experienced disability attorney. Having a lawyer familiar with the Social Security claims process can be a valuable resource when filing for disability benefits.

Let Walker & Harp, PLLC, explain the claims process and help you secure your benefits. Call us at 479-783-5000 or contact us online to schedule a consultation at our Fort Smith, Arkansas, office.


Fort Smith Office
400 North 6th Street
P.O. Box 998
Fort Smith, Arkansas 72902-0998

Phone: 479-783-5000
Fax: 479-783-0420

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WALKER LAW GROUP, PLC. is located in Fort Smith, AR and primarily serves clients in and around Fort Smith, Van Buren, Greenwood, Alma, Clarksville and Northwest Arkansas.

Attorney Advertising. This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.


400 North 6th Street
Fort Smith, Arkansas 72902

Phone: 479-783-5000
Fax: 479-783-0420
Email: michelle@fortsmithlaw.com

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