It can be very discouraging when physical and/or psychological limitiations prevent a person from working. Social Security benefits are not just retirement benefits. They are also available to those who are incapable of full-time work according to SSA requirments . If you cannot work, contact this office to for assistance with your application and/or appeal.
Hiring An Attorney
You are not required to hire an attorney to assist you in your Social Security claim. However, since the Social Security Administration denies most applications for benefits, it is extremely beneficial to have the assistance of a professional that is knowledgeable and experienced in assisting individuals in receiving these benefits. If you choose to seek the assistance of an attorney, do not be concerned about attorney fees. There are no attorney fees unless you win your case. Federal law designates a contingent fee of 25% of your retroactive benefits or $6000 whichever is less.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
The Social Security Administration offers two types of benefits to the disabled: Social Secuirty Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Individuals qualify for SSDI if he or she has worked and paid into the Social Security system before becoming disabled. The amount of the benefit the disabled person receives is dependent upon the person’s earning history.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSI benefits are not contigent upon the individual paying into the system prior to becoming disabled. This benefit is available to any person that cannot work due to disability. The SSI benefit is based on the individual’s income. A person applying for SSI benefits cannot receive the benefit if he or she has outside sources of income.
How Do I Qualify
The Social Security Administration uses a five-step analysis when determining whether or not an applicant qualifies for SSD or SSI.
1. If you are currently working and earning approximately $1000 per month, then you do not qualify. If not, then proceed to step 2
2. If you are not currently working and have severe impairment(s) that have lasted or will last at least 12 months that significantly interfere with your ability to work, then proceed to step 3. If not, then you do not qualify.
3. If your severe impairment(s) is part of the Social Security Administration listings, then you may qualify for benefits. If it is not, then proceed to step 4
4. If your severe impairment(s) prevents you from performing past work, then proceed to step 5. If it does not, then you most likely will not qualify for benefits.
5. If your severe impairment(s) prevent you from performing any work, then you are disabled and may qualify for benefits.
It is important to remember that the Social Security Administration will require medical evidence to support your claim that you are disabled. Although it may be difficult for you to pay for and/or obtain medical treatment, it is important that you make every effort available to you to obtain medical diagnosis and treatment. John P. Bell Law Offices, PC will work with you to obtain the necessary medical documenation and opinions to support your claim.
Filing for Disability Benefits
Contact Social Security to set up an appointment to apply. The toll free number is (800) 772-1213. Click here to find the nearest Social Security office.
Filing a claim for Social Security benefits requires a lot of patience and diligence. It can often be time consuming and discouraging. John P. Bell Law Offices, PC can help to alleviate some of the stress and pressure that comes with this process. Because this is such a vital process to your well-being, do not try to navigate this process alone. Enlist the expertise and experience of this office to guide and assist you through the process.
Social Security Link
Social Security Website: www.ssa.gov