Social Security Disability Insurance, known to many people in Sandy Springs as SSDI, provides financial assistance to workers who become disabled and are unable to continue working. Although the Social Security Administration (SSA) who administers this program advises people to apply as soon as they become disabled, the application process can be confusing and difficult to complete properly. To help ensure that requirements are fulfilled, many choose to use the services of an experienced SSDI attorney to help complete the Sandy Springs SSDI application process.
The SSA administers two different programs that provide benefits to those who are unable to work due to disability. These programs have very different requirements, and it is possible for applicants to receive both types of benefits if they qualify.
SSDI benefits are not paid until an applicant has been disabled for six full months. Conversely, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits can be paid for the first full month after a claim is filed or an applicant becomes eligible.
The first step in the SSDI application process in Sandy Springs is to determine whether an applicant is eligible for benefits, and if so, which type of benefits. To qualify for SSDI benefits, an applicant must have worked in a covered position for a sufficient time and must meet the medical requirements to be considered disabled according to the SSA’s definition.
The work requirement for SSDI benefits varies somewhat depending on the age and circumstances of the applicant, but the general rule is that an applicant must have acquired 40 work credits, and at least half of those must have been earned in the previous 10 years. This roughly translates to 10 years of work, with five of those years occurring within 10 years of the onset of the disability.
Fulfilling the requirements to establish a disability is a more difficult process. SSDI benefits are paid only to applicants with a long-term, total disability. In other words, the medical condition must be severe enough to prevent the applicant from performing the job held previously, as well as from adjusting to or performing other employment. In addition, the condition must have lasted at least a year, be expected to last that long, or be expected to cause death.
Once an applicant has ascertained eligibility, a large part of the SSDI application process involves proving that the disability meets the qualifications. If an applicant is disabled but does not meet the employment requirements, they may qualify for SSI benefits if they lack significant economic resources.
Sandy Springs applicants for SSDI benefits can submit an application online through the SSA website or call to make an appointment to apply in person at a local SSA office. They may also have their applications taken over the phone.
Before submitting the online application or proceeding with the Sandy Springs SSDI application process, applicants should compile information such as relevant medical records, workers’ compensation claim numbers, medical release forms, a completed “Medical and Job Worksheet,” family information, and contact and financial information.
Many claims are filed for SSDI benefits each year, and a large portion of these claims are denied, requiring applicants to file appeals in order to obtain benefits. An experienced lawyer could assist with the appeals process, as well as provide help with the initial application so it is less likely to be denied for failure to include all relevant information.
The Sandy Springs SSDI application process seems simple, but it is important to take the time to ensure that information is supplied properly and worded in a manner calculated to lead to the best chance of success. Call today to discuss with our intake team how to best to approach your application.