Injuries and illnesses can result in a lot of pain. When those conditions prevent you from earning income, the suffering gets even worse. Providing for your family, keeping up with the mortgage payments, and paying for your children’s education can all become very difficult.
Fortunately, the problem was addressed in 1956 with the establishment of the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Supplemental Security Income (SSI) was introduced in 1974. Both programs are managed by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
These programs have been a lifeline for millions of Americans. But filing a claim for disability is not an easy endeavor. Making just one simple mistake can lead to denial. That’s why the attention to detail that experienced attorneys such as the team at Comitz Law brings to the table is so critical.
Social Security Disability Insurance
SSDI pays benefits to you and certain family members if you worked long enough — and recently enough — and paid Social Security taxes on your earnings. SSDI benefits can include cash payments and medical coverage.
Supplemental Security Income
SSI provides monthly payments to adults and children with a disability or blindness who have income and resources below specific financial limits. Unlike SSD, there are no requirements concerning previous work experience to receive SSI benefits. SSI payments are also made to people aged 65 and older without disabilities who meet the financial qualifications. The benefits are intended to help people meet their basic needs: food, clothing and shelter.
Many individuals are eligible for benefits under both the Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income programs at the same time.
The SSA considers you to have a qualifying disability under its rules if all the following are true:
- You cannot do work and engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA) because of your medical condition.
- You cannot do work you did previously or adjust to other work because of your medical condition.
- Your condition has lasted or is expected to last for at least 1 year or to result in death.
SSDI requires total disabilitity. Persons who are considered “partially disabled” are not eligible for SSDI benefits. There are no temporary benefits under the program either.
The impairment must make working at your job impossible, not just more difficult. If it’s determined that you are eligible to work in a current or past line of work, you may qualify for benefits other than SSDI.
The following are some examples of disabilities that may qualify for SSDI or SSI:
- anxiety disorders
- back injuries
- bipolar disorder
- congestive heart failure
- chronic pain
- chronic fatigue
- cystic fibrosis
- hearing impairments
- inflammatory bowel disease
- ischemic heart disease
- liver disease
- lung disease
- multiple sclerosis
- traumatic brain Injury
- vision loss or blindness
Reasons for denial
Roughly two out of three claims are rejected on a first attempt. There are a number of reasons, including, among others:
- failure to follow doctor’s advice
- lack of sufficient treatment/medical records
- refusal to cooperate with the SSA
- capability to exceed earnings limit
- filing a new application instead of appeal
- disability related to a crime
- alcohol or drugs contributed to disability
- disability Is not expected to last long enough
- paperwork errors
The team at Comitz Law can help you get through the complexities of the entire process and assist you in appealing a denied claim. Call or email us to set up your appointment.