When a disabling condition prevents you from working and earning income, the financial stress can become overwhelming. You and your household have to adjust to your new physical limitations and the emotional distress those changes produce and figure out how to keep the lights on and the refrigerator stocked without a paycheck while medical bills pile up.
Through its Social Security Disability program, the Social Security Administration provides support to disabled workers approved for benefits. Securing these benefits can be challenging, but a Cushing personal injury lawyer from BDIW can help. A Cushing Social Security disability lawyer from our firm will work to take your case through the process so you can receive the benefits you need.
Social Security Disability Eligibility Standards
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has strict rules in place for determining applicants’ eligibility to receive benefits. Though your life may be changed by your disability, the SSA requires more than your word or even the word of your doctor in granting approval. Your application must show you meet their medical and work criteria, unless exceptions apply, to receive benefits.
You must have a physical or medical condition that meets the SSA’s definition of “disabled.” This means the condition must make it impossible for you to carry out basic work tasks, including sitting, standing, lifting, and remembering. Additionally, the condition must have affected you–or will affect you–for at least a year or cause your death.
The SSA has its own extensive list of qualifying conditions. If yours does not appear on the list, you can still pursue benefits. The SSA will investigate your specific situation and make a determination.
Employees earn “work credits” through employment that pays into the SSA system. Every year, the dollar amount required for earning a work credit changes in response to inflation and economic trends, and workers can earn up to four work credits in a year. Typically, 40 work credits are required for applicant approval, and twenty of them must have been acquired in the decade preceding the disability’s onset.
Working and earning status also affect eligibility. To collect, you must prove you cannot perform substantial gainful activity (SGA). SGA is largely determined by monthly income, and the amount changes from year to year, depending on economic factors.
The SSA also considers your work capabilities–or lack of them–when evaluating your application. You must prove your condition precludes you from completing work responsibilities you handled prior to its onset. Further, you must prove your condition prevents you from performing successfully in alternative employment situations.
The SSA has established requirement exceptions for certain applicants. Children with disabilities or adults who became disabled before turning 22, spouses or divorced spouses of deceased SSD recipients, those with blindness or visual impairment, or wounded warriors or veterans may meet qualifications for these exceptions.
The SSD application process is not easy, and first-time applicants, especially those applying on their own, are often denied. When a Cushing Social Security disability attorney manages your case, your chances of first-time success increase. And even if you are denied, your attorney will be ready to appeal the decision.
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Benefits Social Security Disability Recipients Can Receive
SSD helps recipients in a variety of ways. Benefits contribute to medical care, costs of living, help with future employment, and money for family members.
Medicare or Medicaid
Upon approval for SSD benefits, recipients enter a two-year waiting period for receiving Medicare health insurance. During the 24-month period, recipients may retain coverage from their previous employer or may apply for Medicaid. A Social Security disability lawyer in Cushing can help sort through the insurance options.
Monthly Financial Support
Though amounts differ depending on how long recipients have worked, earned, and paid into Social Security, they receive a monthly check through SSD. According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), as of January 2024, average payments amounted to $1,537. Payments may be reduced if recipients receive other support, such as through workers’ compensation.
Some SSD recipients, although disabled, wish to return to work in a limited capacity. However, they are afraid re-entering the world of employment will lead to loss of their SSD benefits. Through the SSA’s “Tick to Work” services, recipients can find a way back to the workforce–on a limited scale–without forfeiting SSD benefits.
Certain family members of SSDI recipients may also be eligible to collect benefits. Spouses or divorced spouses, children, and adult children who became disabled before reaching age 22 may qualify.
Sorting through insurance options, ensuring payment amounts are correct, navigating the Ticket to Work program, and securing benefits for qualifying members can be complicated tasks. It is important to enlist help from A Social Security disability attorney in Cushing so you do not risk losing the support you need to accidental errors or oversights.
For the Best Outcome, Have a Cushing Social Security Disability Lawyer Handle Your Case
The onset of a disability, whether the condition is temporary or permanent, can put your household in a state of upheaval. It is likely you will not be in a physical, mental, or emotional condition to work through the lengthy and very specific SSD application process. To keep that process moving as smoothly as possible and to avoid even minor errors that could trigger a denial, partner with a Social Security disability lawyer from BDIW.
Your attorney will help you collect all required documentation and ensure you have fulfilled all elements of the application fully and accurately. The team at BDIW has experience with the SSD application process and can anticipate–and avoid–common roadblocks to success. If you have already applied and received a denial for an application, we are ready and able to take your case through the appeals process.
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Get the Benefits You Need
The SSD application process is time-consuming and often frustrating. Keep your focus on your health and family. Contact us today and let an experienced Cushing Social Security Lawyer from BDIW handle your case. We know how to work through these applications and present the SSA with all the required information. You can trust us to manage your case with efficiency and care and work diligently toward a positive outcome.
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