In any SSI or Disability claim, the more involved our referring partner is, the stronger the claim and the quicker the process.

If you are making a SOAR referral to HAP, here are the ways you can help your client win the benefits they need.

Referral Process

  1. Determine if your client is SOAR-appropriate.
    1. Do they have a diagnosed mental illness?
    2. Have you observed them have difficulties functioning?
  2. If the answer is yes and yes, completely fill out this SOAR Referral, and send to us either by fax at 215-523-9599 or email to Michele Levy at [email protected].

Build and Identify Treatment History While You Wait

We have a wait list that’s a few months long. In that time, there are a few steps you can take to improve you clients’ chances of a successful SOAR claim.

  1. Make sure your client is in active outpatient treatment! If they aren’t already, you should try and set them up with an intake ASAP after making the SOAR referral.
    1. Important! Not all records are equally helpful. It is critical to a claim that the outpatient records actively and consistently reflect the challenges and symptomatic behavior we are building our case around. If the records indicate the client is doing fine, we are not going to have much to stand on.
  2. Build up some sober time.
  3. Call CBH and request their treatment history. You will want to have this in hand by the time we call you, so that we can have a full and accurate idea of the client’s treatment history.
  4. BONUS: request those records from the service providers. This is usually something we do after intake, but it takes a month or so, and if we have them in hand at time of intake, we can hit the ground running and significantly reduce the time the case will take.

Intake Appointment

Whether or not you are present during intake is up to you and your client. If your presence there would help make sure we get the most accurate information, then we’d encourage you to be present. We will certainly lean on you to help set up the intake, preferably either over zoom or in person, here at HAP. Intakes are typically 30-60 minutes. All billable!

Function Letter/Letter of Support

This is your best opportunity to directly and significantly support your client’s case. Here’s a more in-depth guide for writing a function letter, and here’s an example of a strong one.

In short, a strong letter will do three things:

  1. Establish your relationship with your client:
    1. how long you have been working with the client
    2. how often you meet with them
    3. a list of any other supports they might have
    4. all the ways in which you support them.
  2. Provide a brief history of the client.
    1. Where do they live? If in a program, explain how it’s supportive.
    2. How long have they been diagnosed?
    3. If they have a trauma-related mental illness, explain any traumatic experiences.
  3. Detail the client’s symptoms, behaviors, and specific functional limitations.

HUGE: if you are able to get their prescribing doctor or psychiatrist to contribute to the letter or co-sign it, it will carry that much more weight.

These don’t have to come from just case managers either. A willing therapist would be a great source for a letter.

Support Client Through Resolution of Claim

Generally just be in touch, with the client and with us. Sometimes there are additional appointments we have to set up for clients, and in those instances your support is extremely valuable.

If and when we do get a favorable decision, you can help make sure your client completes their PERC appointment with SSA to actually get into pay. Just have them call 1-866-613-3969 and say they have won their case and need to complete their PERC appointment.

If necessary, support them getting a payee, too.