Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) provides cash benefits and health care assistance for qualified individuals who are disabled and unable to work. Various factors can impact whether the Social Security Administration (SSA) awards you SSDI based on your physical or mental disabilities.
While these programs can be a tremendous help, qualified applicants sometimes have their initial claims denied. For this reason, many people seeking disability benefits choose to work with an experienced New Port Richey SSDI lawyer. A compassionate attorney could help you put together a strong application or appeal your denial of benefits.
The process of applying for SSDI benefits and waiting for a response from SSA can be lengthy. Individuals can submit their applications online, by phone, or in person. Typically, applicants must submit a detailed history of their education, employment, job training, and medical conditions as part of their SSDI application.
Individuals may submit medical records directly to SSA if they have them or authorize their medical providers to provide documents to SSA. In some cases, SSA will require additional information about your conditions, which may lead to a medical or psychological examination by a doctor that SSA hires. Once applicants have submitted all the necessary information with the help of an SSDI lawyer in New Port Richey, SSA will determine their eligibility.
Not everyone is eligible for SSDI benefits. Individuals must qualify based on both an earnings test and a disability test. The earnings test measures whether applicants have worked long enough in qualifying jobs to earn a specific number of work credits. The number of credits that individuals have earned, along with their average salaries, indicates the amount of SSDI benefits they can receive.
If applicants pass the earnings test, SSA then considers whether they meet the relevant definition of disability. Generally, to be considered disabled, individuals must have a physical or mental condition that makes them unable to work. This condition must be expected to last at least one year or end in death. Some medical conditions meet an impairment listing in an SSA publication that qualifies individuals for SSDI.
Other medical conditions, however, do not meet an impairment listing. In this case, applicants need evidence not only of their conditions but also how those conditions impact their ability to perform necessary work-related duties. Other relevant factors may include the education and job history of the applicants to measure whether they can do a different type of work.
In some cases, SSA requests additional information or arranges for applicants to see an independent medical professional for further evaluation. SSA also uses this information to determine eligibility for SSDI benefits. An SSDI attorney in New Port Richey may be able to help individuals provide the most persuasive and comprehensive information to SSA to increase the chances of a favorable ruling.
If you are unsuccessful in your application for SSDI benefits, you are not alone. SSA denies many, if not most, initial claims. SSA has established a multi-layered administrative and judicial appeal process that you must follow to challenge the denial of benefits. Enlisting the help of a New Port Richey SSDI lawyer can be a tremendous help when attempting to appeal your denial of benefits.
Legal counsel may be able to gather additional medical evidence and better describe how your medical conditions adversely affect your ability to work. As one level of the appeals process involves a hearing before an administrative law judge, the help of an attorney can be critical. To discuss your case, call today.