Social Security Disability benefits were set up to provide income to those who can longer work because of a medical condition. Unfortunately, Ellenwood applications are routinely denied even if the applicant truly qualifies. It often takes the experience of a Social Security Disability (SSD) lawyer in Ellenwood to get the benefits you need and deserve.
John Foy & Associates has been helping SSD applicants get approved for benefits for over 20 years. We understand how complex the system can be—and how frustrating a denial is for you and your family. We can help with your initial consultation or assist with the appeal process. Schedule a FREE consultation with us today to discuss your unique situation and what we can do for you. Call (404) 400-4000 for your FREE consultation.
How to Know if You Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits in Ellenwood
Basically, Social Security Disability (SSD) pays benefits to those who cannot work because of a medical condition. These benefits come from taxes that were taken out of each paycheck—so, the money is from a system you have paid into. However, the details matter.
To qualify for SSD, you must fit the following criteria:
- Have obtained a certain number of work credits within the last 10 years (while paying Social Security taxes)
- Have a medical condition that prevents you from doing any type of work for a year or longer (or that will result in death)
Let’s break down each of these points further.
Amount of Work You Need to Qualify
Even if you have a disability that prevents you from working, you can’t qualify for SSD unless you have worked enough under Social Security. The Social Security Administration (SSA) determines this through “work credits”:
- You obtain work credits based on a certain amount of wages you’ve earned.
- The dollar amount changes slightly from year to year. (For example, in 2019, each $1,360 will earn you one work credit.)
- You can earn up to four work credits per year.
Most people need to have 40 work credits with 20 of those credits earned in the last 10 years (ending with the year you became disabled). For most people, this means they will not need to have worked much in the past 10 years to qualify.
If you were disabled before age 61, you will typically qualify with fewer credits the younger you are. For example, those disabled between the ages of 31 and 42 will only need 20 years and five years of work to qualify. To learn more about specific work credit requirements, see the SSA’s How You Earn Credits document.
What Qualifies as a Disability
You must have a total disability to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. This means:
- You can’t do work that you were doing before your disability.
- You also can’t do other types of work.
- The condition causing your disability is expected to last (or has lasted) for at least a year or until your death.
Partial or short-term disabilities do not fall under this definition.
The SSA will also look to see if your medical condition is on their Listing of Impairments. This list contains conditions considered serious enough to keep someone from engaging in substantial gainful activity (SGA). Your condition does not have to be on this list, but it will need to be as severe as other listed conditions.
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Information You Need to Apply for Social Security Disability
Even if you meet the above qualifications, you will need to prove them to the Social Security Administration. You will need to include the following in your application.
Work History Information
To demonstrate your work history, you’ll need to show:
- How much money you earned this year and last year
- Employer(s) names and addresses from this year and last year
- Up to five of the last jobs you held in the past 15 years (and the dates you worked them) before you became disabled
- A copy of your Social Security Statement, which shows your disability insurance benefits
- Any other benefits you have filed or plan to make a claim for, such as workers’ compensation
Medical Condition Information
You will also need to outline the details of your medical condition. This includes the following information:
- The details of your medical condition or injuries that have disabled you from working
- Names, phone numbers, addresses, and dates of treatment for each doctor, clinic, or hospital you have seen
- Your patient ID numbers for each doctor
- All prescription medications are you taking and where they were prescribed
- Medical tests you have had, their names and dates, and who ordered them
- The name, phone number, and address of an individual who can be contacted about your condition
Personal Information to Include
Your application will also need to include the following information about yourself:
- Your name, date of birth, place of birth, and Social Security number
- Information on your certain or past spouses, including names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth, age, and dates of marriage or divorce
- Names and dates of birth of any minor children you have
If you qualify for benefits and want them paid electronically, you can also include your bank’s information and routing number.
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How to Get Help with Your Social Security Disability Application in Ellenwood
A lot of Social Security Disability applications get denied due to misinformation or lack of sufficient information. Your application will need to demonstrate the severity of your condition can just how much it prevents you from regular work.
If you are struggling with your application or have been denied SSD benefits, an Ellenwood Social Security Disability lawyer can help. Attorneys will experience in SSD will know what to change, alter, or add to strengthen an application.
Most SSD lawyers (like John Foy & Associates) also do not take an upfront fee, and you only pay if they win your case. You can get help without worrying about immediate costs, which is already a concern for most SSD applicants.
Talk to a Ellenwood Social Security Disability Lawyer for Free
John Foy & Associates understands the stress and disappointment that comes with a denied application. We also know how overwhelming the application process can be. Let us take the weight off your shoulders.
Call us for a FREE consultation to discuss your case. We have been helping SSD applicants get the benefits they need for 20 years. To talk to us about your situation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for your FREE consultation.