About Citizens Disability

Did you just watch a TV ad for Citizens Disability hosted by Alan Thicke? If so, you probably already know how frustrating the Social Security Disability process can be, and you’re looking for assistance. With this in mind, Citizens Disability claims that they can help you navigate the complex and often confusing process of obtaining disability benefits, including filing paperwork and attending hearings, while putting their decades of experience litigating Social Security claims to work for you.

But when it comes down to it, will Citizens Disability really be actively involved in your Social Security Disability claim? And if so, do the services they provide offer a good value for your money? We decided to put these claims to the test, and here’s what we found.

How Citizens Disability Works

According to the Citizens Disability website, the Social Security Administration receives hundreds of thousands of applications each month, which often means that you and your problems can become nothing but a case number.

However, instead of attempting to navigate all the hearings, paperwork, and beaurocracy associated with filing for disability benefits by yourself, Citizens Disability claims that they’ll match you with a disability advocate who can help evaluate your situation, handle your application, and deal with the Social Security agency on your behalf. And by putting their knowledge and decades of experience to work for you, they can help keep you in compliance and fully informed throughout the process (more about this in the Consumers section).

As such, with their goal of being “the nation's leading social justice advocacy group,” Citizens Disability claims that thy can help with both Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claims related to "Medically Determinable Impairment" across all four stages, including:

  • Initial Application – After all your information is gathered and your SSDI application is complete, it will then be filed with your local SSA office. At this point, your application will be reviewed by the SSA to verify your work history, while the State Disability Determination Service will decide your disability level. Citizens Disability claims that your application can be denied for a variety of reasons, including earning too much money during the previous year, a lack of medical evidence, and paperwork that was incorrectly filed.
  • Reconsideration – If your SSDI application is denied based on the above, Citizens Disability will file an appeal. Between these first two steps, a period of 5-7 months could pass.
  • ALJ Hearing – At this point, you and your Citizens Disability advocate will go before a judge to discuss why you’re unable to work. Within 6 months of this court date, you’ll receive a decision. If your claim is denied during this phase, you can either file a complaint in Federal Court or file a new application and begin from square one again.
  • Appeals Council – If you filed a complaint based on the judge’s decision in the previous step, an Administrative Law Judge will review this decision and either reverse or uphold it. Between these last two steps, a period of 12-18 months could pass.

Citizens Disability Pricing

Citizens Disability claims that your initial client evaluation is completely free and comes without risk or obligation. In fact, Citizens Disability only gets paid once your case is won, at which point they’ll collect 25% of the accrued benefit amount, up to $6,000.

What Do Other Consumers Have to Say About Citizens Disability?

Online customer reviews for Citizens United appear to be primarily negative, with the most common complaints referencing:

  • Poor customer service (rude staff, numerous unreturned phone calls, infrequent case updates, failure to send withdrawal letters to the SS administration, etc.).
  • Persistent, repeated phone calls after an individual has requested additional information about the services provided by Citizens Disability.

What’s the Bottom Line About Citizens Disability?

With such a wide variety of Social Security Disability claim types and circumstances surrounding them, it’s difficult to say whether or not Citizens Disability can assist you with your claim—and even if they can, whether or not their services will ultimately be beneficial. With this said, consider the following:

According to this article, the average monthly SSDI check in 2014 is $1,148, which amounts to roughly $14K per year. As such, let’s assume that Citizens Disability helps you win your case, and that your monthly check meets the average payout. This means that they’ll take their 25% fee, which in this example would amount to about $3,500 for the year, or $287 from each of your monthly checks. While the company may have ultimately helped you obtain SSDI benefits in the first place, which is certainly better than the alternative, it’s difficult (if not impossible) to gauge the level of value they provide.

On top of this, Citizens Disability appears to have an online reputation for difficult customer service, which may further decrease the value provided by their services.

Bottom line: If you’re in need of help navigating the SSDI application process, be sure to fully weigh all your options before signing over 25% of your much-needed benefits, as there may be more effective/less expensive options than Citizens Disability.

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28 Customer Reviews for Citizens Disability

Average Customer Rating: 2.3
Rating Snapshot:
5 stars: 8 4 stars: 1 3 stars: 0 2 stars: 2 1 stars: 17
Bottom Line: 32% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 28
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  • 8 out 11 people found this review helpful

    They are real. I won a large sum.

    Citizens Disability is not a scam, I used them and won. It took 5 years, but I am young. I was awarded both. I wasn't aware I had to pay for both, I thought it was a set fee. But when they go for both and you win, you pay for both.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 62 out 67 people found this review helpful

    Waste of time

    • Tucson, AZ,
    • Dec 14, 2015

    I had started my claim in July 2015. By August I was denied because I was working. I told Citizens my last job date would be July 10. I called to advise them that date was wrong, but they decided in their greed to use a date of December 2014.

    I sent paperwork, that they requested in September and then again in October regarding my medical information.

    No communication from Citizens Disability so I decided to call them.

    I called November 9, requesting an update on my claim. I was given the LAME EXCUSE that I didn't respond to any phone calls they had sent to me. I was advised then that my claim was denied, Did I want to proceed? Of course. I wasn't calling for that stupid question to be asked. I was advised they would call me back within 24-48 hours. I did not receive any calls from Citizen's Disability. I received calls from other disability companies asking me question.

    On 11-24-2015 I called again. Again the lies of me not answering my phones were there. And did I want to proceed with my claim?

    On 11-27-2015 I received a letter from them that their efforts to reach me were unsuccessful.

    Imagine my surprise on 12-1-2015 I was told they needed to start a new claim.

    I fired this company on the same date for their lies, and lack of professionalism and lack of timely handling my claim.

    On 12-3-2915 I received a phone call saying the same things and now they want to charge me.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Jan 21, 2016

      Kelsey Taylor

      My husband has had the EXACT same problem. My husband and I filled out and faxed ALL of the necessary paperwork to the social security office. They took $2520.00 from his settlement and they never called him back or even called to let him know he was approved. How is this company still in business?

    • Feb 10, 2016

      doris morgan

      I am curious to know the status of my account.

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  • 54 out 58 people found this review helpful

    Bad Company

    • Florida,
    • Nov 16, 2015

    Citizens Disability is the worst company to deal with (although Binder and Binder were just as bad). You do not have to work full time to apply for disability, they only require this so their 25% of your check comes out to a big amount. If you only qualify for $1000/month and they get $250 they don't want your case no matter how sick you are. This company is corrupt and should be investigated by the Better Business Bureau.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 24 out 34 people found this review helpful

    They were great

    • New York ,
    • Oct 31, 2015

    They helped me fill out the forms. They gave me directions, they provided the doctors information, they were on top of it above and beyond. I want to thank you Citizens Disability for all your help, I appreciate it.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 30 out 34 people found this review helpful

    Beware

    • New Brunswick, NJ,
    • Oct 28, 2015

    They will persistently call you with a computer that pretends to be a human. I don't know how good the service is, but their initial contact process is annoying and illegal. They ignore the "do not call lists" and call multiple times.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 12 out 17 people found this review helpful

    Great communication both with calls and mail.

    • Stafford, VA,
    • Oct 24, 2015

    They kept up with all the data and kept me informed of all the steps and time frames. They provided doctors appointments and made sure I was notified in order not to miss any appointments.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 22 out 28 people found this review helpful

    Great results

    • Huntersville, NC,
    • Oct 9, 2015

    I had a great experience with Citizen's Disability from the very beginning till the end. Everyone I talked to on the phone was professional and answered all my questions. Everything they said would happen and was accurate. I gave them every doctor contact I went to and they gathered all the paperwork throughout the entire two years I dealt with them. I was amazed at how well they knew what to do at each step. I was denied twice verbally just by reading a few of my initial medical reports but then Citizen's sent me detailed reports to be filled out by three of my most visited doctors. After about 8 months I finally got a hearing. It just takes a lot of patience waiting for a turn but they had good follow through and told me it would take about this long. I ended up winning my case with great representation from them and their fees were just taken from the initial lump payment you get of back pay to you. They do not take anything out of your monthly benefits like others were responding. I was very happy overall with this company. You do have to give them the information they need upfront and stick with them.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 29 out 34 people found this review helpful

    Being ripped off, stealing my money

    • Oviedo, FL,
    • Aug 24, 2015

    I did call Citizens Disability and had a phone interview. The HR in my company's insurance referred me to Allsup, who handled my claim and went to court with me and dealt with all. Now, Citizens Disability is taking my disability check for August 2015 claiming I owe them fees. Allsup could not have settled my case without a letter. Now I am being robbed of my disability money, I cannot dispute this. I am blatantly being robbed. Do not call this company. $610.00 may be nothing to some people but to me it is life. This company is unspeakable.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 29 out 32 people found this review helpful

    Good review with BBB. But...

    • Aug 23, 2015

    I checked the Better Business reviews before filing my claim. Citizen Disability looked good so my venture started. They sent me a packet with DVD's to watch to explain what was going to be happening during this process.

    I sent them all the medical information that I already had and then. I went to all my doctors and hospital, got every medical reports, labs. I did all the leg work. I never filed for disability before, I thought I was suppose to do this so we could get this process going and over with as quickly as possible.

    I received a letter of denial from Social Security. I called Citizens disability to ask what to do. They were not aware of a denial. They said they would contact Social Security but it was uncommon to be denied the first time.

    Well after months without an income I finally got a court date. I was a little nervous about this because Citizens Disability is located in another state.

    I received a call from an advocate of Citizens Disability, a lawyer in the area. We discussed the case over the phone the day the hearing which I won my case.

    Months after my hearing I received for a bill from Citizens Disability. They wanted me to pay them for what said was for fees from the doctors and hospitals for reports and paperwork.

    They sent me paperwork for the doctors, hospitals and I took them to be filled out. I paid fees for this, not them. And I talked with them regarding this matter, I thought it was all settled. But NO, Citizen's Disability sent this bill to another lawyers for collection. Not only does Citizen's Disability have a very high fee (25%). But then they want more of the little money you receive each month.

    Stick with a local lawyer to represent you. One that you can ask people about in your own neighborhood. Your not going to have an income during this process. Yes I checked the BBB. I should have check the BBB on my own neighborhood.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 21 out 25 people found this review helpful

    Citizens Disability Has Proven Their Incompetence

    • Pasco, WA,
    • Aug 18, 2015

    At the time of writing, I am currently in a psychiatric ward here in Richland, WA. I ended up here after having attempted suicide, because Social Security denied my request to have my disability claim expedited due to extreme hardship circumstances. I had originally filed my claim through Citizens Disability in December 2011, and went to my first and only hearing on February 28, 2014. I had received my first denial in May 2014, which led to my being evicted from my apartment in Pasco the following month.

    Because of Citizens Disability's incompetence, I will be homeless again as of next month. Their incompetence also drove me to committing suicide. I plan to take legal action against Citizens Disability for legal malpractice, and I have had to contact the offices of US Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell to see what they might be able to do in helping me get the benefits I desperately need.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 33 out 37 people found this review helpful

    I got denied for SSI and I called citizens and they didn't even know I got denied until I told them.

    • WV,
    • Aug 5, 2015

    I applied for SSI on the internet. It wasn't to long there after I seen an ad on TV about Citizens Disability. So I called them and and the information they give me sounded good. So I tried their services. I gave them the information they asked for. After that they said they would keep in touch with me on how the case was going. But I never did hear from them, I always had to call them. So 5 months went by and still nothing. So I called them again, they told me it was in processing. So I said ok.

    So the 6th month comes up. I called the social security office and asked them. They told me I should here something in about 3 weeks. So I said ok great. That time came, I got my letter in the mail that said I was denied. So I called Citizens Disability to tell them I was denied. At first they did not know anything about it. Then the guy on the phone said that's right we got the letter today. I told him that I was going to get a private attorney to do my appeal. Then he said we will start the appeal process right away. I told him no you won't, I got an attorney to do that. He tried his best to let them to continue. I told them no, I've done all the foot work. Then he said they were still going to get there money. I said for what, your ad said "we don't get money unless we get you money." I said I was denied so how can you do that. They said we will file a paper with SSI and you won't know it until you get a paper from SSI stated that it was taken out. I told them I will have my lawyer get in touch with them, then I hung up. This place is nothing but a money making scam.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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