If a serious accident or medical condition makes it impossible to work, Social Security disability may offer the vital financial support and health care you desperately need. Unfortunately, the system is extremely complex, leaving many people confused about whether they qualify and even how to begin the application process. Here are a few essential facts you should know before applying for Social Security disability.
5 Facts About Social Security Disability
1. Not Every Disability Qualifies
Regardless of how painful or limiting your condition may be, Social Security disability will only pay benefits if you’re fully disabled. By the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) standards, anyone capable of performing substantial gainful activity and earning more than $1,220 per month is not qualified.
2. Benefits Aren’t Permanent
One widespread misconception is that Social Security disability benefits will continue for the rest of your life. However, this is not quite true. If you reach retirement age, your disability benefits will end and you’ll start receiving Social Security retirement payments instead. Your benefits will also end if an improvement in your medical condition means you can continue working.
3. Your Doctor Doesn’t Decide Disability
Unfortunately, getting a diagnosis from your doctor doesn’t automatically qualify you for disability benefits. While their determination will be an important part of your application, you’ll still have to go through the entire process and meet the other eligibility requirements.
4. Disability Isn’t Means-Tested
Eligibility for Social Security disability is based on your work history and medical condition—not your financial resources. Unlike some other programs, you can qualify for benefits without exhausting your savings and selling off your assets.
5. Most Applications Are Denied for Technical Reasons
A substantial portion of the applications the SSA receives every year are denied due to technical reasons that are completely unrelated to the applicant’s medical records. Hiring a professional to prepare your application and avoid these common mistakes will dramatically increase your chances of success.
For nearly 20 years, The Gil Law Firm has helped disabled workers throughout Alabama, Georgia, and Florida get the benefits they deserve. Their team has the resources and understanding of the system to clear up the confusion and guide you through every step of the process. Visit their website to learn how they can help with your Social Security disability claim, or call (334) 673-0100 to schedule an initial consultation today.