If you are injured or ill and are unable to work, you may have a number of questions. Can you apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits? Will you qualify? What can you do if your claim was denied? As South Carolina Social Security disability attorneys, we at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers understand the unique challenges faced by disabled workers as they seek financial support in their time of need. Here, we have compiled helpful information regarding the disability determination process to help you see whether your condition may be covered. You are also welcome to call our offices at any time to discuss your unique case.
There is a five-step process used to determine whether an illness or injury should be covered by Social Security disability. After first reviewing an SSDI application to make sure an applicant meets work requirements, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will send the application to Disability Determination Services (DDS) office in the worker's area. In determining whether to approve or deny the application based on the worker's condition, the DDS will consider the following:
1) Are you currently working? Generally speaking, an applicant will not be considered disabled if he or she is working and earning more than a certain amount of money.
2) Are you suffering from a "severe" medical condition? Only medical conditions that severely limit one's ability to perform normal work activities may be considered qualifying disabilities. This condition must also have lasted or must be expected to last for at least 12 months.
3) Is your condition on the List of Impairments? The SSA maintains a list of medical conditions, called the List of Impairments, which are illnesses and injuries considered so severe that a worker may automatically meet the definition of disabled. If your condition is not on the List of Impairments, you could still be entitled to SSDI benefits. The DDS office will consider whether your condition is as severe as a condition on the list, and if it is, you may qualify for benefits.
4) Can you do the same work as before? To be considered disabled, you must not be able to perform the same work as you did before.
5) Can you do any other type of work? If you cannot perform any other type of work, you may fit SSA disability requirements.
In addition to meeting disability requirements, you must meet work requirements in order to be eligible for Social Security disability. You must have worked long enough and recently enough to qualify, and the number of work credits you need will vary depending on your age.
You can find out more about Social Security disability, your right to benefits and how to file a claim or dispute a denied claim by calling our law offices. We offer a free, comprehensive case review to discuss your concerns and offer insight regarding your options. To get started, contact a South Carolina SSDI lawyer today at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers today.