Ssi And Social Security Disability Lawyers
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The attorneys at Morgan & Morgan understand the impact a denied Social Security Disability claim can have on an individual and their family, especially when these benefits are the applicants main source of income. More often than not, applications for Social Security disability are initially denied however, an initial denial does not necessarily mean that the applicant is not entitled to benefits.
Unfortunately, applicants who have been rejected may choose to abandon their claims instead of proceeding with an appeal a process that is undoubtedly intimidating to claimants even in a more typical personal injury case where they could potentially recover the benefits they are rightfully owed. At Morgan & Morgan, our Social Security attorneys have extensive experience representing individuals in the application and appeals processes, among other practice areas, and have the resources needed to recover the benefits our clients deserve.
How Can A Lawyer Help
The Social Security Disability application process can be a very challenging experience. While many individuals do handle the process themselves, statistics show that claimants that are represented by an attorney are more likely to be approved for benefits.
Why? An experienced Social Security Disability lawyer is familiar with the SSD application and appeals process. They understand what types of records and paperwork are needed for each step of the process, and what deadlines apply along the way. Your attorneys experience will allow them to submit the needed information in such a way to strengthen your claim. Often, applicants submit too much, irrelevant information which can hamper their case.
An attorney can sometimes speed up the review and appeals process, making certain that no representative has filed paperwork incorrectly, or made a typographical error, or other mistake to jeopardize your claim.
Am I Eligible For Social Security Disability Benefits
The SSA has created a five-step process to determine whether an application for SSD is approved. The criteria include the following:
Step One: Is the applicant working? The SSA will not consider a person for disability if they make more than a specified amount each month. If they make less than the designated amount, the SSA will take a more in-depth look at the applicants medical condition.
Step Two: Is the applicants medical condition severe? For the SSA to rule the applicant disabled, the medical condition must prevent the applicant from performing basic functions of work for at least one year. If this is the case, the SSA will look at step three.
Step Three: Is the applicants medical condition on the SSAs list of disabling conditions? If the applicants medical condition is not on the list of illnesses that automatically qualify for disability, the SSA will check to see if the condition is as severe as those on the list. If the condition does not fit the list, the SSA will look at step four. Some of the SSAs disabling conditions include:
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Types Of Social Security Disability Benefits
Disability Insurance Benefits : This is most popular benefit provided by the SSA. Disability insurance benefits cover millions of people who were recently employed but are now disabled. Eligible applicants include those who have worked a total of at least five of the 10 years before developing their disabilities. Dependents, including children and spouses, may also be able to collect if a parent qualifies for SSDI. Disability benefit amounts are based on the applicants work history and earnings.
Disabled Adult Child Benefits : Disabled children between the ages of 18 and 22 may be eligible for benefits if their parents receive Social Security retirement benefits or SSD, or are deceased.
Disabled Widow or Widower : These benefits are provided to widows or widowers over the age of 50 who develop disabilities within seven years of their spouses’ deaths. The widow or widower is required to have been married to the deceased for a minimum of 10 years.
Is Your Medical Condition On The List Of Impairments
State Social Security agencies have a List of Impairments that describes medical conditions that are considered so severe that a person is automatically considered disabled by definition of the law. If your condition is not on this list, the Administration will then see if you condition is equal to one on the list. View the List of Impairments.
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Copd And Congestive Heart Failure
If you have been diagnosed with COPD or congestive heart failure, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability benefits. The approval will depend on the severity of your symptoms and how they affect your ability to work. To receive benefits for congestive heart failure, you must provide documented medical proof that you have continuing severe heart failure, even with medication.
Is Your Disability On The List Of Medical Conditions
Social Security assesses your disability against a list of medical conditions that may limit your ability to participate in an SGA. You may still qualify even when your medical condition is not found on the list of disabilities. However, you could need the services of a New Orleans Social Security disability attorney to help you with your paperwork and demonstrate that your current condition makes it impossible to work.
If you are not working or your current job does not meet the definition of SGA, you should forward an application to the Disability Determination Services for an assessment.
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Turn To An Experienced Atlanta Attorney To Guide You Through The Process
You’ve worked for many years and paid into Social Security. Chances are you never expected to become disabled, but one day you realize you can no longer work. Unfortunately, the government is not making it easy for you. Many applications for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits are often turned down.
At Gary Martin Hays & Associates, our lawyers understand what you are going through. We also know how to deal with the Social Security Administration bureaucracy for our clients. If you were denied Social Security benefits, or need assistance with an SSDI case, contact an experienced Social Security disability lawyer serving Georgia. Call 1-800-898-HAYS today for a free consultation.
Your Lawyer Can Help Get Doctors’ Opinions
A disability lawyer will contact your treating physicians to obtain their written opinions about your ability to work and how your medical condition limits you physically or mentally. Often, doctors are more likely to respond to an attorney’s request than to a patient’s.
If you don’t have a doctor you’ve gone to regularly or the doctor you’ve seen doesn’t support your claim, your disability lawyer can request that Social Security schedule a physical or psychological exam, or both .
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A Chicago Disability Lawyer Can Increase Your Approval Odds
The Social Security Administration denies most disability claims at the initial application stage. Common reasons for disability claim denials include a lack of sufficient medical evidence, errors on the application, missing forms, or working over the allowed substantial gainful activity limits. A disability attorney with Ankin Law will help you avoid these common errors to increase your approval odds.
Social Security Disability Lawyers at Ankin Law:
What Is The Most An Attorney Can Charge For Disability
Here’s the great news, an SSDI lawyer will not cost anything upfront.
The cost of disability attorney in Louisiana is the same as it is nationwide.
Federal disability law fees are set by law and cannot exceed 25% of your back benefits.
In many cases, the maximum is $6,000 . Thats because I generally use the fee agreement process.
AND that amount is ONLY due if I am successful in representing you.
If your claim is denied, you owe no attorney fees.
Fees are only due when/if we win your case.
For example, lets assume that we are successful in getting your disability benefits.
Your onset date is set 17 months prior to todays date .
Due to SSA laws, you can be paid 12 months of back benefits in this scenario .
If your benefit amount is $850 per month, your back benefits would equal $10,200 .
The attorneys fee on this amount would be $2,550 .
If this number were above $6000, then only $6000 would be paid to your attorney.
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Applying For Ssdi Benefits While Receiving Unemployment Benefits
There is no strict prohibition on applying for unemployment benefits while you wait to receive a decision on your SSDI claim. However, it can significantly complicate matters. When you apply for SSDI benefits, you are telling the SSA that you are disabled and unable to work for at least 12 months. However, when you apply for unemployment benefits, you certify that you are able and willing to work should you find the appropriate position. Thus, while not necessarily fatal to a disability claim, your certification to your state unemployment board that you can work may harm your case at the SSA.
If Youre Out Of Work And Worried You Cant Afford Our Legal Services
If you cant work due to your disability and you are in a financially tough spot, apprehension about hiring George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers are understandable. However, we will consider your situation, so our Social Security Disability attorneys work for a contingency fee.*
Under this payment plan:
- You will get a free case review when you contact us.
- You will not be charged any money up front, hourly, or out of your pocket.
- Your lawyer will collect their payment if and when you receive your disability benefits.
You take a low financial risk when you partner with our law firm.
Our Firm Stands Apart From The Rest Because We Make Clients Our Priority.
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Reasons Why You Need A Social Security Disability Lawyer
Due to the importance of getting approved for disability benefits when you are unable to work, there are multiple reasons why you need a social security disability lawyer.
The Social Security Administration offers SSI and SSDI benefits. Supplemental Security Income is intended for people with limited resources and low incomes. It is considered a needs-based program. Social Security Disability Insurance is different. This type of benefit is for individuals who have a history of working and paying into the system. Some people will only qualify for either SSI or SSDI. Others may qualify for both.
There are strict guidelines and deadlines throughout the process of filing a claim for social security disability. Many applications for social security disability benefits are denied due to mistakes. If critical information is missing, forms are not filled out correctly, or deadlines are missed, this can delay or jeopardize your receipt of benefits. A lawyer can be the key factor in you not losing any money that you are entitled to.
What Is Supplemental Security Income
SSI is a federal program, administered by the Social Security Administration, that provides financial assistance to people who have low income and few resources. Eligibility is limited to individuals who are aged, blind, or disabled. SSI offers cash benefits to meet the basic needs of food, clothing, and shelter. The basic SSI amount is the same nationwide. However, many states add money to the basic benefit.
SSI pays benefits based on financial need, unlike Social Security Disability which is partly based on your work history and amount of taxes you paid into the Social Security system.
Qualifying for Social Security Income does not exclude a disabled individual from other assistance, including Social Security Disability, Medicaid, Food Stamps, and other available programs.
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Do You Have Enough Work Credits For Ssd Benefits
You need to be sure that your application accurately shows that you have worked long enough to qualify for SSD benefits.
Your eligibility for benefits depends partly on the number of work credits you have earned. The most work credits you can earn in a single year are four.
Your application must show that you pass two different types of earnings tests: Recent work test and duration of work test. The number of work credits you need to pass these tests will depend on how old you were when you became disabled.
What Is The Difference Between Social Security Disability Insurance & Supplemental Security Income
Often used interchangeably, SSDI and SSI actually refer to two completely different government programs. The key difference between the two programs is that SSDI eligibility is dependent on the amount contributed to the Social Security Fund over the course of an individual’s employment history, while SSI has nothing to do with the Fund and is specifically reserved for low-income individuals. In other words, you can qualify for SSI benefits even if you have never worked.
To qualify for SSI, you must be at least 65 years old, blind, or disabled. You must also possess less than $2,000 in assets and have a very low or no income.
A Pennsylvania Social Security lawyer from our firm can review your case to see if you meet the eligibility requirements for either SSDI or SSI. We invite you to reach out to our team today to set up afree initial consultation with one of our attorneys.
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What If Your Condition Is Not On Ssas Listing
Not all conditions such as fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue are on the SSA Listing of Impairments. In such cases, you must prove that your disability has made it impossible for you to do any work.
The key point is that every claim must be fully prepared with sufficient medical records, the necessary input from your doctors, and vocational evidence which together prove that you are unable to function in the workplace.
Talk To A Social Security Disability Attorney
Because each individuals situation is unique, it is always a good idea to talk to an attorney before filing or appealing your claim.
Contact Loyd J. Bourgeois, Attorney at Law today by calling 985-240-9773 to speak directly with a qualified legal professional about the issues and questions specifically involved in your disability claim.
There is no fee for an initial consultation, and you can begin to get the help you need with your disability claim.
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Additional Criteria For Claim Eligibility
Qualifying for Social Security Disability benefits depends on several factors. In some cases, it is as simple as proving you are blind. However, for most individuals, other circumstances will be considered.
Most claimants must have a work history in which they paid into the Social Security system, and they must also have a medical condition that rules out full-time employment. Your age and the level of education you have attained may also be taken into consideration. It is generally presumed that a younger person may be able to retrain for a different type of employment.
The Social Security Administration also expects people with more education to be flexible when it comes to finding different types of work, despite the presence of a disabling condition.
When all factors are taken into consideration, people who become disabled over the age of 55, and who have medium-to-heavy work histories, are approved more readily than younger claimants or those who are highly educated.
Who Qualifies For Social Security Disability
Disabled workers can qualify for Social Security disability benefits but assistance is not automatic. An eligible individual has to apply to the Social Security Administration and be approved to receive benefits. To qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, an eligible applicant has to:
- Earn enough work credits and
- Be considered disabled” under the Social Security Administration’s standards.
Work credits are based on annual wages and quarters of work. The amount of earnings to earn one quarter of credits changes every year. Most workers can earn up to 4 work credits per year. To qualify for SSDI, an individual needs 40 credits, with at least 20 credits earned in the 10 years prior to the disability.
The number of qualifying credits can be reduced for workers who have not worked long enough to accumulate 40 credits. Some people may be able to get benefits if they do not work, including disabled children, veterans, disabled young people, and surviving spouses.
A disabled worker also has to qualify with a disabling condition. The SSA has a list of qualifying impairments, which includes multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, and certain types of cancer. For impairments that are not listed conditions, it is up to the SSA to determine whether the disability qualifies. Each person who files a Social Security disability claim has to provide the medical evidence to show an impairment and the severity of the impairment.
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Can You Work Part
You are allowed to work part-time while collecting Social Security disability benefits as long as your income does not exceed a specific limit set by the Social Security Administration. This is known as the substantial gainful activity, or SGA, limit.
As of 2020, the SGA limit is $1,260 per month. If you work and make more than this monthly amount, the Social Security Administration will assume that you are capable of performing a substantial amount of work and, therefore, you will not be eligible to receive benefits. In addition, when determining whether you are eligible for benefits, the Social Security Administration will also take into account the total number of hours you work the more hours you work, the less likely you will be eligible for benefits.
As a side note, applicants applying for Social Security disability because they are blind are subject to an SGA limit of $2,110 as of 2020. Additionally, regardless of your disability, after you begin receiving SSDI benefits, there is a trial work period of nine months in which you are allowed to earn more than the SGA limit.