Social Security Disability

If you have an illness or were injured in accident and can no longer work, you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides benefits to people suffering from debilitating conditions such as cancer, asthma, diabetes, liver disease, and mental health disorders. It also provides benefits to those who suffer from serious injuries that were the result of accidents. In fact, a substantial amount of applicants for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits apply because they are suffering from chronic or intermittent back pain or a back injury. Other recipients of SSDI benefits suffer from a spinal injury or paralysis, traumatic brain injury, neck injury, or blindness. However, receiving Social Security disability benefits is not as easy as filling out an application. The process can be complicated and long. The vast majority of applications for Social Security disability benefits are initially denied, leaving families in financial distress. The best way to ensure that your Social Security disability application is processed and approved as quickly as possible is to contact an experienced Bronx Social Security Disability Lawyer who understands the complexities of the application process.

Eligibility for SSDI

To qualify for SSDI benefits you must have earned enough work credits, and you must have a medical condition that meets the SSA's definition of disability. Social Security work credits are based on your annual wages from employment or from self-employment. You can earn up to four credits each year. Each year the SSA changes the amount needed to earn a credit. In 2013 you had to earn $1,160 in wages to earn a work credit, while in 2014 you must earn $1,200. So for 2014, once you have earned $4,800 for the year, you would have earned 4 credits. The number of work credits you need to qualify for SSDI benefits depends on your age. The older you are the more credits you will need. For example, if you are less than 24 years old, you may only need 6 credits earned within the last 3 years. While if you are 46 you may need 24 credits, 20 of which must have been earned in the last 10 years.

Filing Requirements

In order to file for disability, there are various eligibility requirements that must be met:

  • You must have paid into the Social Security system over the years of your employment. Also, you must have been employed for a minimum of 5 out of the last 10 years.
  • You must be insured at the time the disability occurs;
  • It must be shown that you will be disabled for a period of 12 months or more.
  • You must be under the age of 65 to file for benefits. After age 65, the payments are considered retirement benefits;
  • You must be disabled to the degree that you are unable to work not only at your current job, but any other job. In determining this, Social Security will look at your age, your job skill, and what is available in the current job market.
Disability Requirement

In order to qualify for SSDI benefits you must be disabled as defined by the SSA. The SSA has a very specific way of defining when someone is disabled. According to federal law a disability is defined as the "inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months." The test for whether or not you are disabled is likely different from other definitions of what is means to be disabled. Not only must you be unable to perform the work you previously performed, but you also must be unable to perform other work. Furthermore, for purposes of Social Security disability, there is no such thing as short-term disability, temporary disability, or partial disability. Benefits are only available for those with long-term disabilities. Thus, your disability must be expected to last for at least one year or result in your death within a year.

If you are a victim of a car accident, truck accident, construction site accident, workplace accident, slip and fall accident, or other type of accident that left you with orthopedic injuries you may be eligible to receive SSDI. In addition, the SSA provides disability benefits to sufferers of illnesses that result from workplace conditions such as respiratory disorders.

Bronx Social Security Disability Lawyer

If you are injured in an accident or suffer from a debilitating illness, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability benefits. If your condition is the result of a work-related accident, you may also be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Because applying for such benefits can be complicated, it is important that you are represented by someone with experience. The staff at Stephen Bilkis and Associates, PLLC understands the type of evidence and medical records that the SSA requires to prove the existence of a disability. We have successfully represented clients filing claims for Social Security disability benefits based on a wide range of conditions and injuries such as those that result from workplace accidents. Contact us at 1.800.NY.NY.LAW (1.800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.

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