If you live in North Druid Hills and cannot work anymore because of a medical condition, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. Unfortunately, even those who qualify for benefits can slip through the cracks and find their applications denied. If you need help with your application process (or appealing a denial), it’s time to schedule a consultation with a Social Security Disability lawyer in North Druid Hills.
Our attorneys are John Foy & Associates have been helping people get approved for the disability benefits they need and deserve for more than 20 years. We know how frustrating it can be to struggle to get the help you need when you cannot work. Let us help—starting with a FREE consultation. Call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to get started with your FREE consultation today.
How You Can Apply for Social Security Disability Benefits in North Druid Hills
This easiest way to apply for disability benefits is online. Applying online is an option if:
- You are 18 years old or older
- You are not currently getting Social Security benefits
- You cannot work because of a medical condition that has lasted (or is expected to last) at least 12 months or result in death and
- You have not been denied for disability benefits within the past 60 days
You can also apply by telephone or in-person at a local Social Security office. You can find the Social Security Administration (SSA)’s locator for the nearest field office location to you.
To apply for benefits, you will need to provide proof of your disabling condition and the fact that you’ve paid into Social Security for long enough (and recently enough). That includes documentation like:
- Your doctor’s diagnosis of your medical condition
- Treatment records for your injury or illness
- Prescription medications that you are currently taking
- Your work history
- Your Social Security number
- And more
The SSA will review your application to determine whether or not you qualify to receive benefits. They’ll also look to see if you’ve provided sufficient evidence of your disability and your work history.
Before you submit your application, it’s a good idea to have a Social Security Disability lawyer look over everything for you and make any necessary changes to improve your application. To schedule a FREE, no-risk consultation with one of our North Druid Hills lawyers today, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.
What You Need to Qualify for SSD Benefits
When the SSA is looking to see if you are eligible for SSD benefits, they will look at:
- The details of your medical condition and whether or not it’s disabling and
- Your work history to see if you’ve earned enough work credits
Let’s look at each of these criteria more closely.
Disabling Medical Condition
Under SSD, you must have a total disability to qualify. Unlike other programs, Social Security Disability does not provide benefits for partial or short-term disabilities. A medical condition can qualify if:
- It prevents you from working in any job you used to do.
- You cannot adjust to other types of work because of your condition.
- Your condition is expected to last for at least 12 months or result in death.
You can check the SSA’s Listing of Impairments to see if your condition has been recognized as severe enough to be disabling. Types of conditions on this list include heart disease, neurological conditions, blindness, irritable bowel syndrome, severe asthma, and certain mental health conditions. If your condition is not listed, it will be compared with a similar condition on the list when you submit your application.
Work Credits and Work History
Besides having a condition that meets the SSA’s definition of disabled, you must also have paid enough into the Social Security system through income you’ve earned.
You earn one “work credit” after you’ve earned a certain amount of wages or self-employment income. In 2020, one work credit is equal to $1,410 in income, and that number changes slightly each year. You can earn up to four work credits per year.
Most people need at least 40 work credits, 20 of which should have been earned in the past 10 years ending in the year you became disabled. Those younger than 62 will typically require fewer work credits than that. If you have questions about how many work credits you need, reach out to an experienced SSD lawyer in North Druid Hills today.
Appeal a Denied SSD Application
Even if you meet all of the criteria mentioned above, you might struggle to get approved for the benefits you deserve. This can be incredibly frustrating and leave you wondering where to turn—but don’t give up. This is where a Social Security Disability lawyer in your area can be invaluable.
If your application gets denied, there are four levels where you can appeal the denial:
- An administrative law judge hearing
- Appeals Council review and
- Federal Court review
Many of these steps can be requested online in most situations. However, before you start the appeal process, contact a trusted lawyer for help. They can look at the application you submitted previously and help you make adjustments to improve it.
Working with a lawyer and improving your application will give you the best chance of getting approved for the benefits you need.
Get a Free Consultation with a Social Security Disability (SSD) Lawyer in North Druid Hills, GA for Free Today
At John Foy & Associates, we know how important Social Security Disability benefits are for those who can no longer work because of a disabling condition. These benefits can be the lifeline you and your family need. We’re here to help you get them.
Contact us today and we’ll start with a FREE, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case and how we can help. If you decide to work with us, there is no fee unless we win your case—so there is no risk to get started today. Call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to get started with your FREE consultation.