Obtaining social security disability benefits can be a difficult and tiresome process. Living with a disability has many of its own challenges and financial security should not be one of them. Thousands of disabled people depend on social security disability benefits each year, yet nearly 65% of those who apply will be denied.
At Disparti Law Group, P.A., we fight to level the playing field with the government so you can receive the compensation you deserve and so desperately need. If you or a loved one is disabled, contact a social security disability lawyer today. Our disability attorneys can help you review your options and choose a plan of action that is right for you.
Table of Contents:
- What is Social Security Disability?
- Who Qualifies for Social Security Disability Benefits?
- Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) vs. Social Security Income (SSI)
- How to File for Social Security Disability
- When to Hire a Social Security Disability Lawyer
- What to Do When Social Security Benefits Are Denied
- Other Types of Social Security Benefits
- Larry Wins Social Security Disability Cases!
What is Social Security Disability?
The two primary social security disability benefits programs are administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA). They include Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). These programs are federally funded.
Each program provides monthly income for disabled individuals who meet the SSA’s very strict requirements. This can be a lengthy and confusing process and it’s best to begin your application sooner than later. A social security disability lawyer can help walk you through the steps, help collect important medical records, and ensure no mistakes are made in the paperwork.
Who qualifies for social security disability benefits?
Depending on the type of benefits a person is seeking, there may be numerous requirements that must be met to ensure that person is eligible. However, a disabled person must meet the general qualifications for social security disability benefits:
- Your medical condition prohibits you from working or engaging in substantial gainful activity (SGA).
- You have had your condition for at least 1 year and you are unable to work, or your condition is expected to result in death.
- You are unable to do the work you have done previously, or you cannot adjust to work due to your medical condition.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) vs. Social Security Income (SSI)
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Social Security Income (SSI) are both government programs for disabled individuals, but they have different requirements and serve different purposes.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is the program into which people pay during their working life. If a person between the ages of 18 and 65 becomes disabled and can no longer work, the SSDI program could assist them if they have paid into it for a sufficient amount of time.
The SSA determines eligibility based on the applicant’s work credits. The requirements for work credits change each year, but in 2023, 1 credit is earned for every $1,640 earned in wages. The number of credits a person must have is based on their age and, generally, how long and how recently they had gainful employment.
Social Security Income
If you have not worked for a while or have not made enough to have gained enough credits to qualify for SSDI, you may still be eligible to apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This disability program is also available for individuals under the age of 18 or over the age of 65 who may require additional financial assistance.
As mentioned, the difference between SSDI and SSI can be complicated and an experienced disability lawyer can help determine which program is best for your circumstances.
How to File for Social Security Disability
If you feel ready to file a social security disability claim, be prepared to take the following steps:
1) Check If You Are Eligible
The first step is to determine if you are eligible to file a social security disability claim. The Social Security Administration offers detailed information on how to determine if you are eligible before you apply.
However, this requires extensive reading and an in-depth understanding of the qualifying conditions. A social security disability attorney can help determine your eligibility. Having an expert who can walk you through the process can save you a lot of time and frustration.
2) Collect the Necessary Information
You will need to gather a lot of information to complete the social security disability application, including medical records, work history, references, and other personal information. It is a lengthy process and should not be taken lightly. Any missing information can result in delays in your application or even denial of your application.
3) Apply Online or In-Person
You can apply for social security disability benefits online through the Social Security Administration’s website or in person at your local Social Security office. However, when considering which option is best for you, remember that the application is extremely long and time-consuming.
4) Prepare for the Process
Once you have submitted your application, know that the process may be far from over. Your application will go through several levels of review. In Chicago and other cities in Illinois, the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) is responsible for determining the applicant’s eligibility for SSDI and SSI programs. It’s best to be prepared to provide additional information or attend appointments.
When to Hire a Social Security Disability Lawyer
There are many benefits available under the social security program to help people who have become disabled. However, the process for applying to these programs—as well as for understanding the various stipulations and requirements—is often difficult.
If you have become disabled, contact a knowledgeable social security disability lawyer as soon as possible. The sooner we could become accustomed to your case, the sooner we may begin helping you navigate the complex application process and work to ensure you receive the most out of your benefits package.
What to Do When Social Security Benefits Are Denied
If your social security benefits were denied, don’t be discouraged. In reality, very few applicants are approved the very first time. While it’s usually best to hire an attorney from the get-go, you can still hire one to help you after your application has been denied. Luckily, every applicant has the right to appeal the SSA’s decision. However, appealing a denied social security disability claim is a complicated legal process.
From the time you receive the notice of the SSA’s decision, you have 60 days to request an appeal in writing.
The levels of appeal in order are:
- Hearing by an administrative law judge.
- Review by the Appeals Council.
- Federal Court Review.
Other Types of Social Security Benefits
There are two other benefit programs that are available for disabled people and their families. Disabled Adult Child Benefits are available for disabled adults who are unable to work and provide for themselves and whose parents are deceased, disabled, or collecting social security benefits.
The second program is Disabled Widow(er)’s Benefits, which are meant for disabled people whose spouses have passed away. However, to qualify for this program, the applicant must be between 50 and 60 years old and must have become disabled at least seven years before their spouse passed away.
Larry Wins Social Security Disability Cases!
With over $1 Billion in recoveries for our clients, Larry Disparti knows how to win! Plus, there is no fee unless we win your case. Contact our Chicago and Tampa Disability attorneys today and find out why thousands of our clients say, Larry Wins!
Chicago Social Security Disability lawyers (312) 600-6000.