Taking on the Social Security Administration (SSA) by yourself may seem like a courageous idea, but the reality is that when you do it alone, you’re less likely to win benefits. Our experienced Kentucky disability attorneys can help you take on the SSA.
We’ll handle your claim with respect and dignity. The disability attorneys you meet in our offices are the attorneys who will represent you at any hearings and who will help with your application.
If you live in Kentucky and can’t work, call us today for your free consultation.
How Does Social Security Define Disability?
When a person is injured or ill and cannot work for an extended period of time, he or she may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. To receive SSDI benefits, you must show that you are disabled.
The SSA has a very strict definition of disability:
- You cannot perform your old job, or you have to stop repeatedly to take breaks, which prevents you from performing the tasks of your job. If you cannot perform another type of work and your skillset cannot be applied to another, easier job, you could qualify for disability benefits.
- Additionally, the disability you are suffering from must prevent you from working for one year or result in death. If you can return to work within one year, you will not qualify for disability benefits.
Social Security also only provides benefits for those suffering from a total disability. If you have a partial disability, you will not qualify for SSDI.
What Kinds of Benefits Are There?
SSDI benefits are meant mainly to replace a portion of your income you have lost due to the fact that you cannot work. These payments are based on:
- Your age
- How long you have been in the workforce
- Your expected retirement date
Generally speaking, SSDI will provide 40 percent of your pre-retirement income. You can estimate how much you will receive by creating a Social Security account and using the SSA’s online benefits calculator.
Unfortunately, there is typically no health insurance coverage provided immediately after your SSD application is approved. If you receive disability benefits for two years, you then become eligible for Medicare coverage. The SSA will send you this information automatically once you qualify. Individuals who suffer from the most severe conditions, such as those requiring kidney dialysis, may qualify for Medicare coverage immediately.
In some cases, your family may also be eligible to receive benefits if your SSDI application is approved. Children who are under the age of 18 can submit a separate application that will provide financial assistance that allows them to complete their high school education.
What Is the Difference Between SSDI and SSI?
Many people think that SSDI and SSI provide the same benefits, but they are two completely different programs.
- Social Security Disability Insurance is available to workers who have completed a sufficient number of work credits.
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI), on the other hand, makes benefits available to low-income individuals who have either never worked before or haven’t accumulated enough credits to qualify for SSDI.
When Should I Apply for Disability Benefits?
If you have become disabled, you should apply for SSDI benefits as soon as possible. It can take as long as three to five months for the SSA to process your application. Additionally, if you are denied, you may have a long appeals process. Quite simply, the sooner you apply, the sooner you could receive the benefits you need.
You can also know what Government shutdown means for your social security disability benefits.