FAQ's: Your Questions Answered
Social Security and Disability FAQs
- What does it mean to be disabled under Social Security? What do
I have to prove?
- Can I receive Social Security
Disability payments if I
am still working?
- Can mental illness, bipolar
disorders or depression qualify
me for benefits if they
keep me from working?
- Do I have to have an attorney
- Are most applications approved?
- Will an attorney improve my
chances for winning?
- How long does it take to receive benefits?
- How much will I receive if I win
- Will I get medical care if I win?
- How much do I have to pay my attorney?
How Do I Make a Social Security Disability Claim?
If you’re permanently disabled and unable to work, you may qualify for benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA has two distinct programs to help people with disabilities — Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income.
Social Security Disability Insurance pays you and certain members of your family if you have a lengthy work history and have paid sufficient Social Security taxes. Supplemental Security Income is additional income paid to you by the SSA based on your financial needs. In either case, your qualification for either of the two benefits is determined by the SSA.
Determining a Disability
The SSA has a five-step process to determine if you qualify for disability insurance:
1. Are you currently working?
If you are working and your income exceeds an average of $1,180 a month, you will most likely not be considered disabled. If you are not working, you’ll be asked to send an application to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) office that will make the decision about your disability.
2. Is your condition “severe?”
If your condition significantly affects your memory or limits your ability to do basic work such as lifting, standing, walking, or sitting for at least 12 months, you may qualify as disabled.
3. Is your condition found on the SSA’s list of disabling conditions?
These conditions include damage to the musculoskeletal system, cardiovascular system, digestive system, sensory nerves, speech, respiratory, genitourinary, hematological, skin/endocrine systems, neurological, mental, immune and congenital disorders, as well as some malignant cancers.
Certain cases, such as ALS and some cancers, qualify for compassionate allowances as soon as the diagnosis is confirmed. If you qualify for the compassionate allowance, your claim is expedited and you can receive benefits sooner.
4. Can you do the work you did previously?
If your medical impairment(s) prevent you from performing your past work, you may qualify for disability insurance.
5. Can you do any other type of work?
If you can’t do the work you previously did, the SSA will look to see if there is other work you can do. Likewise, the SSA will consider your current medical condition, age, education, previous work experience and any transferable skills you may have. If the SSA determines that you can’t do other work, you’ll qualify for disability insurance.
When you apply for either of the two previously mentioned SSA disability programs, you’ll need to submit your medical information. You can use the SSA benefits screening tool to see if you qualify https://ssabest.benefits.gov/).
Working through the SSA Disability Insurance process is lengthy and complicated. Call Dan Newlin Injury Attorneys at 800-257-1822 for a free consultation with one of our experienced and compassionate staff members.
Dan Newlin Injury Attorneys can help determine if you qualify for disability. If you do qualify to receive benefits, we’ll guide you through the intricate process of filing for Social Security Disability Insurance. We’re here for you.