Social Security Disability Benefits: What You Need to Know
November 5, 2019
When you become disabled because of a serious accident or illness, life can suddenly seem unmanageable. In addition to the daunting medical issues you face, you may be worrying about how your family will survive financially. The good news is that the U.S. government provides Social Security Disability benefits for people in your situation. However, applying for and receiving these benefits can be a complicated and often disheartening process.
Surprising statistics about Social Security disability benefits
Many qualified applicants are denied through no fault of their own. Unfortunately, appealing the denial can be just as complex and disappointing as the initial application process. Here are the facts:
- Approximately two-thirds (67%) of initial benefits applications are denied
- Many of these applicants actually meet SSA (Social Security Administration) qualifications
- The average wait time for an appeals hearing is almost 14 months
- The average processing time for these cases is 463 days
- More than one-third (35%) of all appeals are denied
What are the requirements for Social Security disability benefits?
First, you must meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) definition of disability:
- You must be unable to work because of a medically diagnosed physical or mental condition
- Your condition must have lasted or be expected to last for a continuous period of 12 months or longer
- Your condition is expected to result in death
Individuals with temporary disabilities do not qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Next, you must determine which of the following categories of benefits you qualify for:
- Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits (also known as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Retirement, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (RSDI)
These benefits are designed for workers who have a long-term disabling injury or illness. You are entitled to benefits under these programs based on your own work history or that of your parent or spouse.
- Supplemental Security Income Benefits (SSI)
These benefits are intended for children with disabilities and adults with limited income. Like SSD, applicants must meet specific requirements in order to qualify.
What can I do to make sure I receive the benefits I’m entitled to?
As detailed above, the Social Security disability benefits system is extremely complex, with time-consuming paperwork and lengthy processing times. In addition, many qualified applicants are denied the benefits they deserve, even on appeal.
Research shows applicants who hire an experienced SSD lawyer achieve better results while avoiding unnecessary delays and denials.
A qualified SSD attorney can help you:
- Receive the maximum monthly benefit you are entitled to under the law
- Avoid months or possibly years of wait time
- Fill out the many forms required by the SSA
- Gather the necessary medical documentation required to prove your eligibility
- Find mistakes made by Social Security if your claim is mistakenly denied
- Represent you in court if your case proceeds to trial
“We understand how devastating it can be – physically, emotionally and financially – when you or a loved one becomes disabled,” says Mark Bernstein of The Sam Bernstein Law Firm. “If you are attempting to collect Social Security disability benefits, call us. Our experienced and compassionate legal team will help you obtain the benefits you deserve as quickly as possible, even if you’ve been denied before.”
Social Security disability law is complicated, but finding the right lawyer is simple.
Call 1-800-CALL-SAM today for a free no-obligation consultation.