How do I apply for Social Security disability benefits?

| Dec 17, 2020 | SSDI/SSI

Suffering an injury or illness that hinders your ability to work long-term is frustrating. You not only are concerned about if you’ll ever return to work, you also worry about having to start a new career because of your disability. Plus, you don’t know how you will pay your bills when your long-term insurance expires.

You may be thinking about applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. But how do you even begin that process?

Here are five tips about Social Security disability pay you should be aware of:

  1. Social Security has a strict definition of what qualifies as a disability. You must not be able to perform work you’ve done in the past and be limited in what work you can do in the future. You also must be unable to work for at least a year.
  2. You should work with an attorney with experience handling Social Security disability claims to complete your application. The SSDI application process is complicated. You have to provide enough evidence to prove your disability limits your ability to work. You have to meet specific deadlines as part of the process. Having an attorney work with you to complete the application is to your benefit.
  3. You likely will face having your Social Security disability claim denied at first. In fact, 65% of first-time Social Security disability benefit claims are denied. Overall, Virginia has just a 42% approval rate.
  4. You can appeal your Social Security disability claim if it’s denied. Again, if you want to appeal, you should work with an attorney to handle the appeal process. You are more likely to win a disability benefits appeal with the help of an attorney.
  5. Social Security will allow you to work some without lowering your disability benefits as part of its Ticket to Work program.

Getting your Social Security disability benefits approved may take months. You may need to make multiple appeals as part of the process. Yet you may need to persevere, so you can get the disability pay you need.

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