Are You Eligible for Social Security Disability Benefits?
If some sort of accident or disability keeps you from working, there is a chance that you are eligible to receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. You may have physical or mental impairments that are holding you back from working, however, there is a very specific definition of the term disabled when it comes to determining eligibility for SSD. To get started, you should ask yourself four basic questions:
What is my work experience as of now?
One of the first things the Social Security Administration will evaluate is your work history. Based on your record, you are given work credits. You need a certain number of these credits to qualify for SSD. Two things will be looked at to determine your amount of credits – the first is your recent work. During this evaluation, the administration looks at your age when you became disabled in relation to how much you have worked in the period leading up to your disability.
The second thing taken into consideration is your overall work history. They’re basically looking at how old you are in comparison to how long you’ve paid into Social Security.
Can I do the same work I did before?
To qualify for SSD, your disability must be deemed as severe. The Social Security Administration (SSA) does have a list of impairments they consider severe enough to restrict work or quality of life. If your condition is not listed, you must be able to prove with medical evidence from an expert that you can no longer do the job you used to because of your disability.
Can I do different work?
In addition to not being able to do the same work as you did before you became disabled, you must also be unable to do any other related work. This is determined based on your disability, education, past experience, transferable skills, and any vocational training. Your age is also a factor of consideration as different rules apply depending on whether you are under the age of fifty, aged 50 – 54, or 55 and over. You will only qualify if the SSA determines, according to your age group, that you are not able to do any other work related to your previous field, whether there are jobs available or not.
How long will my impairment last?
As terrible as it may sound, to qualify for SSD, your disability must be expected to last at least a year or result in death. This must also be supported by medical evidence. If your condition is expected to hold you back from work for less than a year, you will not be eligible as they assume people have savings and other support to get them through short periods of unemployment.
An inability to work can take away a feeling of independence. SSD can be a step in reclaiming that independence, but the process is not always easy and can be very trying in a difficult time of your life. That is why we are here. We can help you through every step of the process and ensure you have the best possible chance to be approved. Contact the Ladas Hoopes law office at 231- 744-6218 to find the support and help you need.