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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59 Consumer Reviews for Citizens Disability

Average Consumer Rating: 2.4
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 17 4 star: 3 3 star: 1 2 star: 2 1 star:  36
Bottom Line: 34% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 59
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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    They were very good, they helped me win my case, thanks again.

    • Manhattan, NY,
    • Jan 10, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    My name is Willie Ann August. Citizen Disability helped me win my case through Social Security. They were a great team, they work hard to win my case. Yes, I would recommend a friend to Citizen Disability because they get the job done. If I can be of any more help, do not hesitate.

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

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    • Jan 11, 2019

      Matt Brulet,

      Hi Willie, thank you for the kind words, we're so glad you had a good experience! Thank you again for trusting us with your claim.

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    How I was able to have people that work for Citizens Disability on my side was the best support I could have.

    • Connecticut,
    • Jan 7, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Thank you for your support. I told Citizens Disability everything that happened to me since I found out I had MS. Report about doctor visits and what they always said on how I am doing, the medicinal drugs I have to take. Make sure you have a phone number or email so Citizens Disability can always get a hold of you and always keep in touch. Make sure you fill out all the forms Citizens Disability sends you, and if you have any questions you can always call them. GOOD LUCK.

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

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    • Jan 8, 2019

      Matt Brulet,

      Thank you for trusting us with your claim, Rico, and for sharing those tips on how others can help their cases. We're in this together with our clients, and couldn't have done it without you. Please let us know if we can ever help in the future.

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  • 0 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Wait for it...

    • Springfield, MO,
    • Jan 4, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I don't recall when we started. But, I know they took more effort in my case than I did. Part of my illness... Anyway, they went beyond trying to reach me, trying to get me to fill the paperwork out and return it. There was a long period we had no contact. But, my court date was October 2018, November 2018 I heard from court, December 28th (today) I was found favorable.

    They sent a very nice gentleman to represent me. Which could have triggered my PTSD if he wasn't...He only saw me for maybe 10 minutes prior, he tried to and succeeded prepping me for the process. So I appreciate that he knew what he was doing and was able to be successful without my getting there at a more responsible time. But, I wasn't driving.

    Someone was always available to talk me through the stress of the process when things came up.

    But, I will have to wait another 60 days to find out what happens next.

    If all goes well...I will be changing to 5 stars!

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

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    • Jan 7, 2019

      Matt Brulet,

      Hi Neena, we're glad you've had a good experience so far - please don't hesitate to contact our client services team if you have any questions or if there's anything else we can do to help. Thank you!

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  • 1 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Social Security benefits

    • Garrett, IN,
    • Jan 3, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Like I said, it takes time, they only took maybe eight, they kept in touch and told me everything was going on all. The people I talk to on the phone are very respectful, knowledgeable and make you feel comfortable. Thank you, Citizen Disability, you guys are wonderful.

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

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    • Jan 7, 2019

      Matt Brulet,

      Thank you for trusting us with your claim Randall!

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  • 5 out 6 people found this review helpful

    How Citizenship Disability helped me when no one else did

    • Greeley, CO,
    • Dec 4, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I've never heard of Citizens Disability. I had been applying for disability for almost 7 years and could never get it. I was on Adult Financial, which is money Social Services gives you while you're applying. I also get Food Stamps and Medicaid right now. I've had two hip implants and a knee surgery and might have to have another knee surgery, so I just can't go do a lot of walking around on a job. If I try sit down work, I lose them, I've lost 6 jobs in a row the past 6 years and I think some of it could be discrimination since I'm 4-foot-5.

    Also, I think I could have a learning disability which could make it hard to learn in a calling center. One place sent me to get tested, another one suspended me for making a mistake on the computer and another one they wouldn't keep me because I got a 73 on their test instead of an 85. I had tried doing para-aide subbing, but they wouldn't call me because of my hip implants, claimed I couldn't run after kids. I could've asked for help if I needed to, I tried tutoring, but they never had jobs after 3 months, also, tried handing out samples in stores but when someone came to train me, I guess she saw I couldn't reach stuff and told the company, so I wasn't allowed to go back.

    One day one of my neighbors in my building taped a note on my door when I was out with citizenship disabilities number. At first, I thought someone from there called me, anyway, I called them back last March sometime, and they worked with me for 8 months. The lawyer that went to the hearing with me even gave me a ride back because buses didn't run there and this girl from church had dropped one off. It was an hour away, I didn't ask her for a ride, she offered.

    She was so nice. A couple of weeks ago I found out that I got approved. I was shocked since every time I've tried to get it I got denied. Anyways, I think they did great, they did in months what no one else did in years.

    My neighbor told me she's seen it in a commercial several times and they had said they worked with you until you get it. I don't even watch TV, she said after that congenerical Comcast took that channel out and she never saw it again. I never heard of this place but I guess someone upstairs decided to let me know about it, I guess he knew something I didn't.

    I think what they did was great, I've been trying to get on it for years.

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

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    • Dec 4, 2018

      Matt Brulet,

      We're so glad you had a great experience, Pearl. Thank you for trusting us with your claim! If we can ever help in the future please don't hesitate to let us know.

    • Dec 6, 2018

      Pearl L.

      Okay, thanks, I just thought I'd write a review so everyone knows that they do that good.

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    It was a terrible experience with Citizens Disability, I would not recommend them to anybody

    • Texas,
    • Nov 16, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I called Citizens Disability two years ago. They didn't keep in touch with me, they didn't report all my medical records to the disability office. I had a court hearing in June 2018, it got denied, and I called Citizens because the letter from the disability office made no sense, it was so inconsistent that they basically said I was disabled, but they still denied it. Plus, Citizens sent a none-attorney to my court hearing, which didn't help at all.

    The last week of October I get a letter from Citizens saying Citizens was dropping out after two years. The attorney never called me, and the whole two years I had Citizens I never spoke to the attorney, every time I called them, I always spoke to someone that couldn't answer my questions. I asked several times to speak to my attorney, but he never called me. Now I had to find another attorney and have to start all over again. I am so upset, two years down the drain because Citizens Disability screwed me over and took my health like it was a joke. They did not fight for me at all, sending a none-attorney to my hearing proved that I had so many questions and still do.

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

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Definitely a scam!

    • Maryland,
    • Nov 3, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I would rate them -0 stars if that was an option. They utilize predatory practices on seniors and send in papers to SSA without your permission. Even though certified letters were sent to them, phone calls were made to them, even a statement was given to the Social Security Administration, they still manage to send unauthorized documents on behalf of my brother, who I am the legal guardian of. Who by the way is already receiving disability payments as a result of my applying and submitting paperwork. So much of my time and energy is spent on trying to have them cease and desist. I think I will have to now pay for an attorney just to put a stop to this once and for all. DON'T DO IT!

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

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  • 10 out 10 people found this review helpful

    If I had it to do over again

    • Denton, TX,
    • Oct 6, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I engaged Citizens Disability with hopes that my disability claim would go as smoothly as possible. After much waiting and little action, my claim has been denied after the ALJ hearing. The judge’s letter is riddled with inconsistencies, errors and pure assumptions on the judges part.

    I wanted to speak with someone about this, so I called Citizens Disability. As with every time I have called, my call was answered with a person whose primary job appears to be reading notes and give "answers" that don’t really mean anything. I can never get through, or receive a "promised" return call from someone who could actually speak about my specific claim. The "procedure" entails more waiting. This time I need to wait up to 5 weeks for a mysterious shadowy figure (my team lead who is never available) to review my claim and make a decision of what to do next. There is never any sense of urgency or recognition that I have been barely surviving with no income.

    What I have gotten so far is a place to send the results of my work to as a pathway to get it to the SSA, something I could do myself. There is no assistance of any kind along the way. For example, I asked for clinics that might help with tests and procedures ordered by my doctors. Their response was to send me a list that included planned parenthood (I am male and do not need contraception or an abortion) and a VA hospital (I am not a veteran).

    I am running a risk in doing this since my claim is not completed, but I am at a loss as to what to do.

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

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    • Oct 8, 2018

      Matt Brulet,

      Hi Vance,

      While we apologize for the delay, as we stated on the phone, it takes some time for your case handler to fully examine the judge's decision, especially those inconsistencies and inaccuracies you mentioned, to develop a framework on which to make an appeal.

      Your case handler will be reaching out today to speak with you directly. While we hope you're willing to hear him out, we wish you the best of luck regardless of how you choose to proceed.

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Took my money

    • Florida,
    • Sep 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I only receive $978 a month, which is making it very hard to live on. They did nothing for me and I fired them, but they still took $6,000. I got nothing for retroactive because they took it all! I never talked to them and did not know I even had a lawyer.

    I'm now trying to find another advocate because I think I should be able to collect enough to live on. Being physically, emotionally, and mentally disabled, I'm scared!

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

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    • Sep 27, 2018

      Matt Brulet,

      Hi Debra,

      We'd love to speak with you about your situation, as we can't find a client file that matches the details you've posted here. Please contact our client services team so we can investigate this and make it right. Your monthly payments are determined by how much you have paid into the system over the course of your employment and is not something that any advocate can increase or decrease. In addition, our payments are regulated and processed by the social security administration and are set at 25% of retroactive benefits, so it is not possible for us to have collected all of it. Again, we'd love to hear from you so we can see what happened and set it right.

    • Oct 30, 2018

      JoAnn D.

      I've been trying to contact Nika Meneses for three days now. Every time I get hold of someone, I'm told she is going to call right back. So far, no call. I am unable to speak to Nika to answer the questions she says she has. I'm informed they have a lot of calls besides mine, I'm unable to speak to a supervisor, and I'm told there is no one I can speak to. As of right now, they've hung up on me three times. It's not really worth the frustration in my opinion.

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  • 13 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Don’t use these people

    • Tybee Island, GA,
    • Aug 20, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had a stroke in October 2017, I got in touch with Citizens Disability that month. They did not find my case until the end of December 2017. They never stayed in touch with me, the Social Security office stayed in touch with me more than Citizens Disability. I was going to use my back check to pay my hospital bill but I didn’t get a back check because they didn’t file my claim until the end of December. When you call them, no one speaks English and if you ask to talk to someone in the United States they get really rude. I am getting my disability but not because of anything that they did!

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

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    • Aug 21, 2018

      Matt Brulet,

      Hi Julie,

      We're sorry you were disappointed with our services. We filed your claim as soon as possible, after receiving your signed paperwork. Your retroactive benefits are calculated by the Social Security Administration based off of how much you paid into the system, and when your onset date is. While we wish you had a better experience, we thank you for your feedback and will certainly use it to be better in the future.

    • Sep 13, 2018

      Sandra C.

      I was wondering how they got my information about me being hurt in my back. I called and asked them the question, and they said they got it from me. Well, duh, yes you did when you called me, but now I see all the negative reasons why people don't want to use them. I'm not singing the papers when they arrive in three to five days, and the told me five percent of winnings, not 25 percent. I guess when you can't speak English to well you can't understand what the heck they are saying. But no, I'm not going to use y'all, now that I see no good reviews on here. Thanks for your time it's not needed anymore.

    • Sep 26, 2018

      Darrell S.

      Hi, my name is Darrell, and I'm not sure l agree that Citizen is really that bad, but yes, there is room for improvement. I've been waiting for almost three years; I also hate talking to the Indian lady who can't pronounce my name or spell it. When I ask to please let me speak to someone handling my case, all I get is "they will call you in two days," and guess what, no call. I have seen a judge nine months ago and nothing. I'm sorry to say this but I think of suicide, I'm so depressed, I can't pay rent, I eat at the Soup Kitchen because I can't buy food. I can bearly get to my doctor, no carfare. Oh, and now my insurance doesn't want to pay for my treatment anymore. Is it a lot to ask for? I want to speak to a manager from America, tell me they are still there, let me feel there is still some hope. All I want is to live and get the approval. Will I refer a friend? I sure hope so.

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  • 16 out 16 people found this review helpful

    Terrible attorney

    • Arizona,
    • Aug 12, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I tried for five years with Citizens to get my disability, and they were the most unprofessional group I have ever meet. They do not keep in touch with clients nor do they return phone calls when asked. And at no time can you ever speak with the attorney you hired during your case. Half of there staff does not speak English, and I would never recommend them to anyone in the first, not even my worst enemy. I sincerely hope this helps anyone else from having to suffer the experience I have had with Citizens Disability.

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

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    • Aug 13, 2018

      Matt Brulet,

      Darren,

      We're sorry we didn't meet your expectations. We keep in touch with our clients through a variety of methods, including phone calls, text messages and email. We also return all phone calls and voicemails received. While we wish you had a better experience, we do sincerely appreciate your feedback and will use it to be better in the future.

    • Aug 15, 2018

      Julie S.

      The worst lawyers I have ever seen! I got in touch with these people in October and they didn’t file my case until the end of December! I was going to use my back-check to pay my hospital bills! Guess what, I didn’t get a back-check. They never return phone calls. I stayed in touch with the Social Security office more than Citizens Disability stayed in touch with me! Don’t use these people.

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