What Might Make Me Eligible for Social Security Disability Benefits?
If you are going to apply for Social Security disability benefits (SSDI), it can be a confusing and daunting process to get through. Also, although you may feel that you qualify and need these SSDI benefits, there is always a chance that the SSA will deny your claim; this is especially true the first time you apply.
You must note that the SSA doesn’t take your word on your condition, medical background, or inability to work. The paperwork can be voluminous as you must back up your medical history and medical records, any attempt to gain employment, and much more.
Additionally, if you make a mistake on the application, such as leaving out critical information or forms, your application will be automatically denied.
Using the qualified, skilled, and knowledgeable SSDI lawyer’s help and professional expertise can be invaluable in getting through this arduous application process. Your lawyer will help you collect all the information you need, including medical evidence, background information on your disability, and possibly even expert witnesses on your condition and why you cannot work anymore.
Although it varies from state to state, over 2 million people apply yearly for SSA’s disability programs.
There are many rules and regulations that you must meet to apply for SSDI, and these rules must be followed. To apply, you must meet the SSA’s self-described “strict” definition of disability.
For example, you must:
- You must prove you can no longer participate in “substantial gainful activity.” This is defined as making more than $1,350 monthly for non-blind applicants or $2,260 for blind applicants.
- You must show you cannot work in your previous occupation or any other career due to your condition.
- It’s also mandatory that your disability will last at least a year or result in your death.
Additionally, it also must hold that if you are applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), then you must have worked long enough at your previous job and that Social Security covered it.
For Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the SSA’s second disability program, you must prove (amongst other things) that you have limited income and resources.
So, you see that the application process alone can take months or years; if you make errors, it could be denied.
The expertise, knowledge, and attention to detail your skilled SSDI or SSI lawyer applies to your case will always get the job done more rapidly and provide you the best chance of obtaining the benefits you deserve.
How Do I Even Begin My SSDI Disability Claim?
Most Americans work hard all their lives, but now, due to illness or accident, they need to apply for Social Security Disability (SSDI). This can be a stressful and emotional decision to make. However, there’s no reason to hesitate or feel badly about this decision, as these benefits are there for your use. About one-quarter of working adults will be forced to use these benefits before retirement.
If you are going to apply, you need to know at least five things before you do; they are:
- Are you currently working at a job – Your lawyer will explain that if you can perform any “substantial gainful activity” despite your disability, you may not receive SSDI.
- Do you have a severe condition – Your condition must make it difficult enough to interfere with your basic work-related activities.
- Does the SSA recognize your condition as disabling – This is a “tricky” question and is always best answered by a qualified, knowledgeable SSDI lawyer. There is a list followed by the SSA of all disabling that are severe enough that they automatically qualify you for disability.
- Can you still do your previous job – You must prove to the SSA that your condition interferes with your ability to do the work you did previously.
- Can you do other types of work – Usually, the SSA will determine if there is additional work you can do. They might consider medical conditions, age, education, past work experience, and more.
So, in no way is this a simple process, and the continuing help of your empathetic SSDi lawyer will be invaluable to your success.
What Are Some Examples of Documents I Need for My Application?
Every condition is unique, but some examples of the documents you will need are:
- An original birth certificate as proof of birth.
- Valid proof of your U.S. citizenship or permanent residence.
- Your W-2 form or self-employment tax returns for the last year you worked.
- Complete medical documentation from your doctors’ reports, treatment records, and all current test results.
- A confirmed Adult Disability Report that gives all the information about your work history, condition, illnesses, or injury.
However, it must be emphasized that attempting to navigate this complex legal process alone is never the recommended way to start. You need and deserve these benefits, and with the professional help you require, you have the best chances of winning your case for yourself and your family.
Can A Qualified SSDI Lawyer Help Me Get the Benefits I Need?
Yes, you can go through this process yourself, but by doing so, you may be setting yourself up for failure.
A recent study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) determined that if you obtain the help of a professional SSDi lawyer when applying (or getting other assistance) to obtain your benefits, you could be up to three times more likely to be successful.
Trying to apply and win our SSDI and SSI benefits by yourself is never a good idea; there is too much at stake. Just a few of the items your lawyer can manage for you are:
- Providing you with all the paperwork you need to begin the process.
- Help you complete and file your application for SSDI benefits.
- Work tirelessly to prove to the SSA that they should automatically pay your benefits under the “Compassionate Allowance Rules.”
- Request an appeal if needed.
- Request your hearing and prepare you for it with the Administrative Law Judge, which in many cases is necessary.
- Represent you and act on your behalf at your hearing.
- If needed, provide you with medical expert testimony and much more.
You only have six months from the start to complete your application, so you can’t hesitate. Your lawyer will do everything possible to get your application done and approved quickly.
I Want To Apply For SSDI, But Need Help; What Should I Do?
If you want to apply for SSDI or SSI benefits, the first step you need to take is to attempt to determine whether you qualify. However, the best way to do this is to consult a qualified, experienced SSDI lawyer. You will immediately be denied if you attempt it independently, submit an application, or do anything incorrectly, it will be denied.
The Social Security disability lawyers at Roeschke Law have a long and successful history of helping struggling disability clients throughout California win their cases. Call them today at (800-975-1866 and have the best chance possible of receiving the disability benefits you need and rightfully deserve.