Social Security Disability (SSD) is one of the biggest government programs providing benefits to disabled individuals in Woodstock. To qualify for benefits through the SSD program, you must meet certain criteria. The application process can be complicated and confusing—and sometimes, those who qualify still get denied. If you have become disabled from working, it’s best to contact a Woodstock Social Security Disability lawyer for help.
Our SSD lawyers at John Foy & Associates are here to assist you with your application or appeal. We understand what is required to get approved for benefits. We also know how to help improve applications that have been denied. Call us today at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online and we’ll give you a FREE consultation.
How Much You Can Receive Through Social Security Disability Benefits
Although Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are modest, they are a lifeline for disabled individuals. When you can no longer work to support yourself and your family, you need the assistance SSD can provide.
Once your application is approved, your first benefits will be paid the sixth full month after your approval date. For example, if you get approved for benefits on February 15, 2019, your first payment would be for the month of August 2019.
Your Benefits Depend on Your Earnings
The exact amount of disability benefits you’ll receive depends on your full earnings covered by Social Security. When you work, you pay into Social Security taxes from a portion of your check. This is what the Social Security Administration (SSA) will look at when determining your benefits.
You can request your Social Security statement online through the Social Security Administration website or use their benefits calculator. A Woodstock Social Security Disability lawyer can also help you with this, as it can be a confusing process.
What to Do if a Loved One Dies
Social Security also offers survivor benefits for those who are impacted by a worker’s death. A portion of Social Security taxes is meant to pay for survivor’s insurance. This helps provide benefits to spouses, parents, and children of those who pass away.
The amount of benefits a loved one may receive after a worker’s death depends on their lifetime earnings and how much they paid into Social Security. If you lost a spouse or other loved one who paid into Social Security, you have options. Contact an SSD lawyer right away for help.
Reasons Social Security Disability Applications Get Denied
If you get denied for benefits, know that you still have options. You have the right to request an appeal for the denial. However, first, you’ll need to understand why your application was denied so you can make adjustments.
Here are the most common reasons SSD applications are denied.
Making Too Much Money
If you are receiving enough money to be considered substantial gainful activity (SGA), you will probably be denied benefits. SGA is for the year 2020 is $1,260 per month. If you earn more than this per month, you will not be considered disabled.
You can’t be earning more than the SGA when you apply for SSD. However, you can earn more once you are approved for benefits.
The Condition That Isn’t Severe Enough
To qualify for SSD benefits at all, you must meet the SSA’s definition of disability. That means your condition must be serious enough to last 12 months or more (or it’s expected to result in death).
Many SSD claims get denied if there is no evidence the medical condition will cause disability for at least 12 months. If you get denied and your condition is severe enough to qualify, you might need to provide more evidence. Call a Woodstock Social Security Disability lawyer to help.
The Applicant Can’t Be Reached
Disability Determination Services (DDS) is an agency that reviews your medical condition and determines whether or not it’s eligible for benefits. To do this, the DDS and the SSA must be able to communicate with you about your application. If they cannot get ahold of you, you might get denied.
If you hire an SSD lawyer to handle your case, you won’t need to worry so much about communicating with the SSA directly. However, your lawyer will need to stay in touch and be available regarding your case.
Not Following Prescribed Treatment
You will need to follow all treatment and therapy as prescribed by your doctor for your condition. If it’s found you are not keeping up with appointments, your benefits can get denied. There are exceptions, however, such as not being able to afford treatment, having a fear of surgery, or certain religious beliefs.
Drugs or Alcohol Are a Factor
If alcoholism or a drug addiction contributes to your disabling condition, you might be denied benefits. The DDS will look at whether or not you would still be considered disabled if you discontinued using alcohol or drugs.
The Applicant Committed a Crime or Fraud
If your injury occurred while you were committing a felony, and you were convicted of a crime, you may not be able to receive benefits for those injuries. The same goes for being in prison after a felony conviction or being injured in prison.
It’s typically still a good idea to apply even if you meet the above criteria, however. You may still be able to get a period of “benefit-free disability” that will prevent your benefits from decreasing.
You can also be prosecuted for fraud if you obtained benefits through dishonest means. It’s always best to be honest on an SSD application. If you are worried about being able to accurately demonstrate your disability, contact a Woodstock Social Security Disability right away.
Talk to a Social Security Disability (SSD) Lawyer in Woodstock for Free
At John Foy & Associates, we understand how vital SSD benefits can be after a disability. We are passionate about helping disabled workers obtain the benefits they have paid into for most of their working life. That’s exactly what we have been doing for 20 plus years.
Contact us today and we’ll set you up with a FREE consultation. If you choose to work with us, we don’t take a fee unless we win your case. For more details, call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for your FREE consultation.