1. How do you qualify for SSDI?
In order to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, you must show that you have a physical or emotional condition, such as an injury or illness, that prevents you from being able to work. This condition must be expected to either lead to your death or last for at least one year.
2. How do I apply?
You can apply for SSDI benefits by filling out an online application, by calling the Social Security Administration or by visiting a local Social Security office.
3. How much will my benefits be if my application is approved?
The amount of money you will receive if/when your application is approved will depend on how much you paid into the system before you became unable to work. The amount you receive will not be affected by your income or the severity of your condition.
4. Is there a waiting period before my benefits begin?
If the Social Security Administration determines that you qualify to receive SSDI benefits, your first payment won’t arrive until you have been disabled for six months.
5. Will I receive any back payments?
If Social Security finds that you were disabled before you applied for SSDI benefits, you may qualify to receive retroactive benefits for a maximum of 12 months. However, keep in mind that the waiting period will still apply. Thus, in order to receive retroactive benefits, your disability must have begun more than six months before your application was approved.
6. How long will it take for Social Security to approve my application?
The length of time it will take for your application to be approved will depend on a number of factors. In some cases, applicants receive their decisions in as little as thirty days. On the other hand, some people may wait up to two years to receive their benefits. On average, claimants wait for their initial decision for three to four months. However, claimants who are initially denied may wait much longer for an approval.
7. What happens if I go back to work while receiving SSDI benefits?
If you would like to return to work while receiving SSDI benefits, you may be able to do so with the help of a trial work period. This period will last for up to nine months and is designed to test whether or not you are able to work. If you find that you can’t work, you can continue receiving benefits. However, if your trial period is successful, your benefits will eventually be discontinued.
8. What can I do if my application is denied?
If your initial application for Social Security benefits is denied, you can appeal the decision. You must file your appeal within 60 days after receiving your decision from the Social Security Administration. After receiving the appeal, the Social Security Administration will reevaluate your claim. If the claim is denied again, you can request a hearing.
9. What happens when I reach my full retirement age?
When you reach your full retirement age, you will begin receiving retirement benefits instead of SSDI benefits. You cannot receive both Social Security retirement and SSDI at the same time under the current law.
10. What is the difference between Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income? Can I collect both?
While SSDI benefits are paid to people who have contributed money to the system and are no longer able to earn a living, Supplemental Security Income is paid to disabled people with low income. If your household income is low and you meet all of the qualifications for both programs, it is possible to receive both SSDI benefits and SSI at the same time.
11. Do I need an attorney?
You can apply for SSDI benefits without the help of an attorney. However, if you want advice and assistance while preparing the application, or if you are preparing to file an appeal, consulting a lawyer can be beneficial. Keep in mind that an attorney cannot charge you a fee for his or her services unless your claim is approved. If your claim is approved, you won’t pay more than the lesser of 25 percent of your past-due benefits or $6,000.
12. Are some disability cases easier to win than others?
Certain types of illnesses or conditions may make an SSDI case easier to win. For example, if you have a condition that is known to be incurable or terminal, your claim may be approved faster. However, conditions that are more difficult to see or understand, such as chronic pain, may not be as easy to win.
13. Can I expedite Social Security’s decision?
In some cases, an attorney may be able to expedite a hearing by communicating with the judge directly. However, this is not always possible.
Contact Schneider & Palcsik
There is a good amount of information to digest with regards to social security disability. This is why you need an experienced firm to help guide you through. Please contact the firm of Schneider & Palcsik now to get started on answering any questions you may have.