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What if you just got out of prison and need to file for Social Security disability?

It happens.

You did something dumb, and you were incarcerated for it.

The problem is, that if you were incarcerated for a lengthy period of time, it is very likely you lost all your work credits and can only qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Also, many people are incarcerated in the United States and have undiagnosed mental impairments, that if treated properly, would have helped them maintain a normal life and not end up in prison in the first place. And, once in prison, the environment tends to exacerbate their symptoms as well.

But, now that you have been released, it's okay to file for SSI.

File your application online and be sure to return any correspondence SSA sends you in the mail.

Be sure and let SSA know you have prison medical records. And, be sure and establish care with a physician or clinic as soon as possible to continue documenting your condition. This is actually very important. For you to have a chance at winning your case, you're going to have to have medical evidence.

On another note, at the initial application and the reconsideration, the fact that you were in prison means very little to the person making a decision on your case. However, once you reach the hearing level and have to have your case heard by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), things are sometimes different. Most of the judges do not hold your incarceration against you, but some do. A judge is not supposed to be prejudiced, but people are people. I've seen it happen before, so just be as prepared as possible if your case has to go to the hearing level. Be polite and respectful and that should always help overcome these types of obstacles.

If you do need help with your case, you can always call our office at: (888) 780-9125.

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