If you have worked much at all over the past 10 years, you’ve paid into Social Security through taxes. The Social Security Disability system was set up to help Americans, including citizens of Fairburn, who become disabled from working. If a medical condition prevents you from working anymore, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. Many applicants need help from a Fairburn Social Security Disability (SSD) lawyer before their application gets approved.
At John Foy & Associates, we know how vital a regular income is for you and your family. We can help you with your application—whether it’s your first one or you need to appeal a denial. Call us today for a FREE consultation where we’ll look at your application and discuss how it can be improved. Call (404) 400-4000 to get started.
Four Things to Know About Social Security Disability in Fairburn
Social Security Disability, or SSD, is paid through taxes taken out of each paycheck. It acts as an insurance for those who have paid into Social Security and later become disabled from working. There are some common misunderstandings about how SSD works. It’s important to understand what SSD is and how it works.
Here are some of the most important points you should know.
1. There Are Two Types of Social Security Disability Benefits
There are two programs that fall under the “Social Security Disability” umbrella:
- Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSDI is what this article page is about. As mentioned above, it’s designed to cover lost income if someone who has paid into Social Security becomes disabled from working.
SSI, on the other hand, does not take into account someone’s work history like SSDI. It was created for people who can’t have their financial needs met through SSDI alone. Someone may qualify for SSI if they are low income and 65 or older, disabled, or blind.
2. You Must Meet Two Main Criteria to Qualify
To seek SSD benefits, you will need to submit an application through the Social Security Administration (SSA). You can apply online for disability benefits, over the phone, or at a local SSA office.
When the SSA receives your application, they will be looking at two main factors:
- Your work history and
- The severity of your disability
You will need to have worked (and paid into Social Security taxes) for a certain amount of time, and recently enough, within the last 10 years. You also must have a certain number of work credits. You earn work credits through regular wages, and you can earn up to four per year.
In 2019, you earn one work credit per $1,360 in wages. The exact amount changes per year. People age 62 or older need at least 40 work credits with 20 of those earned in the past 10 years. If you become disabled at an earlier age, you will require fewer work credits and fewer years of work to qualify.
Severity of Disability
Besides work history, you must also be completely unable to work. This means you can’t perform work you previously did or any other type of work. The medical condition that leaves you disabled must also be expected to either last for a year or more or result in death.
3. Family Members Can Also Benefit
Most of the time, family members of disabled individuals can also receive Social Security Disability benefits. Those family members include:
- Spouses who are age 62 or older
- Spouses who care for a child who is below age 16 or disabled
- Children who are below age 18 (or below age 19 if they are still in high school)
- Disabled children over age 18 (if they became disabled before age 22)
4. Social Security Disability is Not a Handout
Social Security Disability is not a free program. Social Security Disability benefits are provided by taxes. That means, if you worked and Social Security taxes were taken from your paychecks, you have earned the right to apply for benefits if you become disabled.
What Happens if You’re Approved for Benefits in Fairburn
Many SSD applicants get denied on their first try. Working with a Social Security Disability lawyer can help improve an application and increase your chances of approval.
If you do get approved for SSD benefits, your benefits will begin on the sixth full month after your disability started. For example, say you became disabled on February 10, 2019. After being approved, you’d receive your first benefits for the month of August 2019.
Your next question is probably how much you will receive. This is based on the average wages you earned that were covered by Social Security. You will need to view your Social Security Statement to know the exact benefits you’ll receive. You can also use the SSA’s Benefits Planner.
Common Reasons Social Security Disability Applications Are Denied
If you get a notice of denial from the SSA, it will contain an explanation of why you were denied benefits. If your claim is denied, it may be because the SSA believes any of the following:
- There are other jobs you can still perform
- There was not enough medical evidence of your disabling condition
- You failed to follow treatment plans from your doctor
- You failed to show up to scheduled medical exams or send requested documents to the Social Security office
- A new application was started after you were denied benefits previously
It can be hard to make a clear sense of reasons for the denial. But you will need to understand why you were denied so you can make changes and appeal it.
Many applicants choose to work with a Fairburn Social Security Disability lawyer at this stage, if they weren’t already. A lawyer experienced with SSD benefits will be able to pinpoint areas for improvement in an application. They can also help you appeal the denial and fight for the benefits you deserve.
Get a FREE Consultation With a Fairburn Social Security Disability Lawyer
Don’t let a denial keep you from seeking Social Security Disability benefits. You have paid into this system all of your working life. If you become disabled and meet the qualifications, you should receive the benefits you are owed.
John Foy & Associates can help. With over 20 years of experience helping Social Security Disability applicants with their claims, we know what the Social Security Administration is looking for. Call us today at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to schedule a FREE consultation and application evaluation.