Whether your impairment developed gradually over time or was the result of trauma, you may qualify for disability benefits offered through the Social Security Administration (SSA). However, applying for these benefits can be a long, arduous experience.
With the help of a Mauldin Social Security disability lawyer, you do not have to undergo the process of applying for disability benefits alone. We will take the time to review the facts of your case and determine what benefits options you have.
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The Two Types of Social Security Disability Programs
Depending on your situation, you may qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or both. While the goal of these programs is relatively similar, the qualifications for both are very different.
Essentially, SSDI is a work credit-based system that takes into account your work history. SSI, however, is centered around your financial resources. According to the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) Red Book, you may qualify for both.
Applying for SSDI
We mentioned above that SSDI is a work credit-based system. The idea behind this program is that for every quarter that you work, you “pay into” the Social Security system, and are therefore allowed to collect benefits.
You are allowed to earn up to four work credits a year, with each credit in the year 2021 equaling $1,470 in earned income, per the SSA. If you do not have enough work credits, you may not be eligible for SSDI, but instead, for SSI.
Applying for SSI
SSI is not a work credit-based system. The SSA does not take into account how long you have worked when approving or denying claims.
According to the SSA, you may qualify for SSI if you meet at least one of these criteria:
- You are over the age of 65 years old
- You are blind
- You are disabled
SSI takes into account your financial resources when the SSA determines your eligibility. While you are allowed to work and receive SSI, your “countable resources” cannot be more than the established threshold. As of 2020, you cannot have more than $2,000 in countable resources for a single person or $3,000 for a couple.
You may be surprised to learn that many of your resources may not count toward the SSA’s resource limit. For example, your home, household goods, personal effects, burial plots, and one vehicle typically do not count toward your asset limit.
Understanding the difference between SSDI and SSI can be complicated. However, when you work with a Mauldin Social Security disability lawyer, it does not have to be.
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The SSA’s “Blue Book”
The SSA uses what is known as “the Blue Book” when it comes to listing impairments that qualify as disabling. If you have a disability that is not covered in the Blue Book, there is no need to be concerned; the SSA may classify your impairment as one that is very similar to it.
You will need to include information in your application that establishes that you have a disability. This could include imaging scans, lab test results, and statements from your doctor.
The Blue Book lists impairments that relate to the following:
- The musculoskeletal system
- Special senses and speech disorders
- Respiratory disorders
- The cardiovascular system
- The digestive system
- Genitourinary disorders
- Hematological disorders
- Skin disorders
- Endocrine disorders
- Congenital disorders that affect multiple body systems
- Neurological disorders
- Mental disorders
- Cancer (malignant neoplastic diseases)
- Immune system disorders
Your Mauldin Social Security disability attorney may work with medical professionals to learn more about your disability. Additionally, they may determine what information could be used to supplement your application for benefits.
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Filing an Appeal After Being Denied Benefits
If you are denied SSDI or SSI, you have the ability to file an appeal. However, you only have a short window of time in which to do so. Per the SSA, you usually have 60 days to request any type of appeal as it relates to your claim for benefits.
There are four stages of the appeals process, which include:
- A hearing overseen by an Administrative Law Judge
- Review by the Appeals Council
- Federal Court review
It is an unfortunate reality that many people who apply for the SSA’s assistance are denied benefits. However, as discouraging as a denial may be, you can contest any decision made by the SSA. A lawyer can be by your side throughout the appeals process.
A South Carolina Social Security lawyer can review the SSA’s reasoning behind your application’s denial and work to get you the benefits you need.
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George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers Is Here to Help
When a disability prevents you from providing for yourself, applying for benefits can quickly present a challenge. However, regardless of the program you qualify for, your Mauldin Social Security disability lawyer can work to get you the benefits you deserve.
The benefits offered through the SSA, which include monthly compensation and other resources, can help to promote your quality of life. Let the team at George Sink P.A. Injury Lawyers get started helping you today.
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