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“They sent somebody to visit me in the hospital and get my side of the story (totally free). I was assigned Mr. Crawford and told that we had a case. Fast forward about 9 months later and I received literally 14x what the insurance company had offered me. This is after the lawyer and medical fees as well. So basically this was totally free and I barely had to do anything I am so glad I called Marks and Harrison and I will be recommending them to all of my family and friends.”— Robert Smith
When a person suffers a disability that prevents them from working for at least one year or is expected to end in death, they can apply for Social Security disability benefits (also known as SSD or SSDI). Disabled individuals can apply for these benefits online, at their local Social Security office, or over the phone.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) receives thousands of applications every year and, unfortunately, they deny far more than they accept. Don’t give up hope if your application is denied at first. Many valid claims go on to be approved during the appeals process.
If you have been denied the disability benefits you need, or you would like to apply, our Charlottesville disability lawyers are here to help. Contact us now for a free discussion about how Marks & Harrison can help you pursue SSD benefits.
What Are the Most Common Forms of Disability?
There are many medical conditions that are eligible for SSDI. Some of the most common of these include:
- Musculoskeletal system and connective tissue – These disabilities include conditions such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, back pain, and reflex sympathetic dystrophy.
- Mental disorders – Schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), autism and Asperger’s syndrome, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorders are all examples of mental disorders that may qualify.
- Cardiac and circulatory disorders – These disorders involve the flow of blood to the heart and throughout the rest of the body. They include conditions such as angina, high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, heart failure, arrhythmia, and congenital heart defects.
- Neoplasms or cancer – These are abnormal masses of tissues, also called tumors.
- Nervous system and sense organs – Examples of these conditions include Parkinson’s disease, neuropathy, neuralgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, blindness, and sciatica.
Many other conditions can also qualify an individual for SSD benefits. Some of these include chronic migraines, digestive system disorders, respiratory conditions, and autoimmune system disorders, among many others.
How Do I Know If I Qualify for Disability Benefits?
The SSA will consider five factors iwhen reviewing your application to determine if you qualify for disability benefits. These include:
- If you are working – SSDI is intended for individuals who are unable to work due to their disability. Therefore, if you are currently working, you likely will not qualify for disability benefits.
- The severity of your disability – To qualify for SSDI, your condition must be so severe that it prevents you from performing basic work-related activities. The more severe your condition, the more likely it is that you will qualify for benefits.
- If the SSA recognizes your condition – Even if you believe your condition is severe, if the SSA does not recognize it as a disabling condition, you are not eligible for SSDI.
- If you are able to perform the same type of work you used to – If your condition prevents you from performing the same type of work you once did, you may qualify for SSDI.
- Your ability to do other types of work – When determining if you can perform other types of work, the SSA will consider your medical condition, your age, education, your past work experience, and any skills you learned in one job that could help you learn another job.
A Charlottesville disability lawyer can help determine whether your condition could qualify for SSDI.
What Is the Difference Between SSDI and SSI Benefits?
There are several differences between SSDI and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The main difference is that SSDI is available to individuals who have accumulated an appropriate number of work credits. SSI on the other hand, is available to individuals who have a low income and have never worked, or have not earned enough work credits to qualify for disability insurance.
How Do I Apply for Social Security Disability Benefits?
You can apply for disability benefits at your local Social Security office, or you can apply by calling Social Security’s toll-free number at 1-800-772-1213. You can also apply for these benefits online.
What Can I Do If My Social Security Disability Benefits Claim Is Denied?
The SSA denies approximately 70 percent of the applications they receive. However, this does not make you ineligible for benefits. If your claim is denied, you can appeal the denial. More than half of the applicants that appeal the denial are later approved to receive SSDI.
In Virginia, you must first submit a request for reconsideration, which simply asks the SSA to review your application again. Most individuals will have to go one step further, and appear at a disability hearing in front of an administrative law judge (ALJ).
If your claim is denied by an ALJt, you can appeal to the Appeals Council. If ,it is still denied at that point, you can take the case to federal court.
How Much Can I Get in Social Security Disability Benefits?
If you qualify for Social Security Disability insurance, the amount of benefits you receive is based on the taxes you paid. The severity of your disability and the amount of assets you have are not taken into consideration.
The average amount of benefits paid out to disabled individuals is between $800 and $1,800. If you receive disability benefits from another source, this could affect the amount of benefits you receive from Social Security.
What Are Some of the Most Common Disabilities Suffered by Veterans?
Due to the nature of being in the military, veterans are typically more susceptible to suffering from a medical condition than civilians. The most common disabilities suffered by veterans include:
- Bilateral hearing loss
- Severe scars
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Lumbar and cervical strains
- Limitation of flexion of the knee
- Limitation of motion in the ankle
- Paralysis of the sciatic nerve
- Degenerative arthritis of the spine
Veterans often find it just as difficult to collect disability benefits as civilians, so they should always work with an attorney when filing a claim. Depending on the source of the disabling condition, veterans may be able to pursue benefits from the VA as well as or instead of the SSA.
What Disability Benefits are Available for Veterans?
When veterans suffer from disabilities related to their military service, they can apply for veterans’ benefits from the Veterans’ Administration. These benefits can include disability compensation and disability pension, vocational rehabilitation services, educational assistance, life insurance, and home loans programs.
Talk to a Charlottesville Disability Lawyer Now
If you are unable to work because of a disability and need benefits to pay for daily expenses and more, contact Marks & Harrison today. Our disability lawyers in Charlottesville know how to file applications and appeal the denials to give you the best chance of receiving the benefits you need.
Call us today or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.