A disability attorney ready to help his clients with their case

Social Security Disability
FAQs in Metairie,
New Orleans, the Northshore

Questions about Getting Social Security Disability in Louisiana

How Long Does it Take to Get Social Security Disability?

When you first apply for Social Security Disability benefits, it can take several months to get an answer on whether your claim is approved or denied.

If you’re approved, your monthly disability checks should start soon. But getting denied is extremely common. In that case, your next step is to appeal. The appeals process can again take several more months, or even a year.

When you get approved for benefits, however, you receive a lump sum of back pay to compensate you for all the time you spent waiting.

You can learn more about how long it takes to get Social Security Disability benefits, and how the process works, on this page:

Questions about Working with Social Security Disability Lawyers

Do I Need a Lawyer for My Social Security Disability Claim?

You can apply for Social Security Disability on your own. But applying for disability benefits is a little like playing a game where your early moves can shape whether you win in the end.

This is probably a game you’re not familiar with, but the Empower Disability lawyers have gone through this process thousands of times. Having a disability lawyer for your claim can ensure your application is done right—and lift the burden of getting it done yourself.

Another reason to have a lawyer is that most people are denied disability benefits. Now you need to start an appeal. And the process gets much more complicated.

Appealing can even include going in front of a disability judge to explain, personally, how your health problems make it impossible to work.

If you have a lawyer representing you there, that can improve your chances of winning life-changing disability benefits in the end. And you pay no attorney fee until you win.

Should I Get a Disability Attorney for My Initial Application?

While it may seem clear that you want an attorney when you need to appeal a disability benefits denial—which involves filing arguments explaining why Social Security made a mistake and possibly talking to a disability judge—you may think about applying on your own when you’re first starting to seek Social Security Disability benefits.

You can do that. But we recommend working with a lawyer from the beginning for at least three reasons:

No. 1: Your own ease and convenience. Your lawyer can make the process easier for you, sparing you from filling out all the forms, gathering all the documents and getting everything into shape to send to Social Security.

No. 2: Avoiding mistakes. If you have an experienced disability lawyer from the outset, your lawyer can help you avoid mistakes that may delay your claim or get your claim denied. The process may go smoother for you in the end.

No. 3: Being ready in case you’re denied on the first try. Most people get denied. And if that ends up being you, having a lawyer already familiar with your situation can be a great help when you file your appeal of that denial. Appealing may be your best chance of winning benefits and the stability they provide. But you only have 60 days to file your appeal. Your lawyer, if you have one already, will know what to do and be able to move fast.

Do I Need to Get a Local, New Orleans Area or Louisiana Disability Lawyer?

National disability law firms are out there. They may try to get you as their client.

But there are some problems with using a national disability firm:

  • Impersonal. They may be trying to process mass numbers of disability claims and treating you like just another number.
  • Disconnected. They may not understand how the local Social Security offices process claims in your area, and the people in those offices, generally operate. They also may not know local health care options available to you, which can be a problem when you need records from your medical treatment to win benefits.
  • Uncertain Credentials. With a national firm, you may not work directly, or at all, with a licensed attorney. They could have non-attorney advocates or attorneys you rarely hear from.

Empower Disability exists to help our neighbors in Metairie, Kenner, New Orleans, Chalmette, Gretna, Marrero, Houma, the Northshore, Amite, Hammond, and any community in the New Orleans area or around Louisiana. Our offices are in Metairie and Amite.

Our mission is to treat you with respect and dignity at a difficult time—when you can’t work and need financial assistance because of health problems.

We get to know you and your needs personally. We also know how the process works in Louisiana. We know ways to get medical treatment. We know the Social Security offices. We frequently appear before the local disability judges.

Empower Disability wants to see you standing strong again after you get knocked down by bad health. We want to help you build a new foundation for your life.

Questions about Different Types of Disability Benefits

Can I Get Social Security Disability and Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

Yes, you can.

You can receive Social Security Disability benefits—when you’re unable to work for health reasons for an extended time. And at the same time, you can get workers’ compensation benefits, paid through your employer’s insurance, for an injury you experienced on the job.

In fact, a work injury can cause the kinds of lasting health problems that lead to a disability claim.

The amount of your Social Security Disability checks could be reduced to offset lost wages pay you get from workers’ comp.

But if you qualify for both kinds of benefits, you should file for both.

Reasons include that Social Security Disability may last longer than your workers’ comp payments, so you want to get those disability benefits started. And workers’ comp benefits pay for medical care that resulted from your job injury—not something Social Security addresses—in addition to sending income support when you can’t work.

If you may need both, Empower Disability is the Louisiana disability law firm to call because we’re a division of Workers’ Compensation, LLC, which is a leader in helping Louisiana workers secure their workers’ comp benefits.

We can get you exactly the kind of help you need for both Social Security Disability and workers’ comp.

When you’re up against injuries and illnesses that disrupt your life, we’re here to help you restore stability and protect your financial future.

I was hurt at work. What should I do?

When you experience an injury on the job in Louisiana, you likely should get your medical treatment paid for. And you should receive replacement pay for lost wages. Those are key benefits under Louisiana workers’ compensation.

As soon as possible after your accident on the job—or when you realize your job has damaged your health through wear and tear—you should get medical care.

And you should report what happened to your employer. They’re supposed to start a workers’ comp claim for you.

But employers and the insurance companies they pay to cover workers’ comp don’t always cooperate. They delay benefits. They deny benefits.

A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you make sure you receive everything you’re entitled to, so you can move beyond a workplace injury to the next chapter of your life.

Empower Disability is part of Workers’ Compensation, LLC, where Workers’ Comp Is What We Do.

So if you were hurt at work, get in touch with us.

What Disability Benefits Are Available for Widows or Widowers?

If you lost a spouse who was receiving Social Security Disability benefits, you may have an option to receive continuing financial support.

This could make a big difference as you work to get through such a difficult time.

These are situations in which widows or widowers of a disability benefits recipient can get additional benefits from Social Security:

  • You’re 60 or over.
  • You’re in your 50s, and you have health impairments that qualify for disability benefits.
  • You’re caring for a child under age 16.

Depending on your situation and your age, you could receive between 71.5% and 100% of your spouse’s disability benefits.

To understand what you may be able to get, talk to the Metairie disability lawyers at Empower Disability. It costs nothing for you to get a consultation on your claim.

We want to help you keep going and begin writing a new chapter in your life, after a major, painful change like losing a spouse.

Can an Adult Child of a Parent Getting Disability Benefits also Receive Financial Help?

Social Security Disability has a form of benefits for adults with disabilities whose parents have paid enough into the system to qualify for Social Security benefits.

They call these “disabled adult child” benefits.

This is for you—or a loved one—if the medical impairment in question began no later than early adulthood.

Because of your health problems starting from a young age, you’ve likely been unable to work and pay into Social Security. So Social Security gives you a chance to receive financial assistance based on your parent’s Social Security record.

These are the basic qualifications:

  • You’re over 18.
  • You have a disability that qualifies for benefits (meaning you can’t work).
  • Your qualifying medical condition began before you turned 22.
  • You’re not married.
  • At least one of your parents paid enough into the system to qualify.

The parent whose Social Security record qualifies you for benefits must be receiving disability benefits themselves or receiving Social Security retirement benefits, or they are deceased.

This can be confusing.

But you don’t have to figure it out on your own.

The New Orleans disability lawyers at Empower Disability can take over the job of filing for—and, if needed, fighting for—your benefits.

Benefits like these, including monthly checks, can increase your sense of peace and independence.

The Empower Disability attorneys are focused entirely on helping real people, people like you, reach better financial stability.

Give us a call.

How Much Money Can I Get from Social Security Disability Benefits?

The different disability benefit programs run by Social Security calculate the monthly payments you receive in different ways, so there’s a range of possible amounts you may get.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) factors in your past earnings from when you worked.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) provides a set amount determined by the government.

To understand more about how it works, you can read more here on how much Social Security Disability benefits pay.

Questions about Qualifying for Disability Benefits

Why Did I Get Denied Disability Benefits even after My Doctor Said I Have a Disability?

Sometimes you can hear from your doctor that he or she thinks you have a “disability,” but you still get denied for Social Security Disability benefits?


A disability in the doctor’s eyes can be different from Social Security’s strict, highly specific definition of disability—which it uses for the purpose of awarding financial assistance.

Social Security’s official idea of a disability requires you to be unable to work. But many people continue working while managing disabilities identified by doctors.