New Bedford Disability Lawyer

ROB LEVINE, NEW BEDFORD DISABILITY LAWYER

NEED A DISABILITY LAYWER? GET AN ATTORNEY

When you are ready to file for either SSDI or SSI benefits, contact our attorneys for help. With years of helping the disabled get their Social Security Disability Income, we know how to navigate the system and help speed up the process. Call your New Bedford disability lawyer today.

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HOW AN EXPERIENCED DISABIILITY LAWYER CAN HELP

When you file a claim for SSI benefits, you will need to provide certain documents to Social Security. These documents may include your Social Security card or number, proof of age, citizenship or alien status record, proof of income, proof of resources, proof of living arrangements, medical sources, and work history. Social Security needs to see original documents, but they will be returned to you.

If you believe you qualify for SSI benefits, do not delay in contacting us. The earliest Social Security will pay SSI is the month after the filing date of your application or the month after you first meet all eligibility requirements, whichever is later. We’ll work with you and your local Social Security office to get you the benefits you deserve as quickly as possible. Know your rights and responsibilities for SSI.

DENIED SSDI? GET A NEW BEDFORD DISABILITY LAWYER

In addition to meeting Social Security’s definition of disability, you must have worked long enough and recently enough under Social Security to qualify for disability benefits. Social Security work credits are based on your total yearly wages or self-employment income. You can earn up to four credits each year. The amount needed for credit changes from year to year.

If you are approved for SSDI, certain members of your family may qualify for benefits based on your work. They include: your spouse, if he or she is 62 or older; your spouse, at any age if he or she is caring for a child of yours who is younger than age 16 or disabled; your unmarried child, including an adopted child, or, in some cases, a stepchild or grandchild. The child must be younger than age 18 or younger than 19 if in elementary or secondary school full time; and your unmarried child, age 18 or older, if he or she has a disability that started before age 22 (the child’s disability also must meet the definition of disability for adults).

FAQs About Your

SSDI Case

What is a compassionate allowance?
In order to decrease the decision time for a claim, the SSA has identified a list of conditions that have already met their standards for disability benefits. This initiative was created to help those with serious disabilities by simplifying the process. There are two ways your condition will qualify you for benefits under the CAL Initiative.
  • If you have a listed illness or disease that is the same as listed in the schedule of diseases listed on the SSA website, you may automatically qualify for benefits.
  • If your disability has the same signs and symptoms as a disease listed on the schedule under the CAL Initiative, then you may qualify for benefits as well.
 
Can I receive SSI and SSDI benefits at the same time?
In order to receive concurrent benefits, there are going to be two separate tests. The standard to receive benefits medically is the same in both programs. The difference between the two programs is your work history and income level. In order to qualify for SSDI, you must have worked for the last five years and paid into the Social Security system. If you qualify for SSDI and your monthly compensation is less than the maximum amount, currently $783, you could be eligible under the SSI program. Remember, you must qualify for each one individually. In order to qualify for SSI, you must not have income greater than the maximum nor can your net worth be greater than $3,000. This looks at both your income and your household income. For example, if you were receiving $500 for SSDI, you could qualify for $283 under the SSI program.
Why do I need a lawyer to help me apply for SSDI?
Hiring an attorney to help you with your Social Security Disability application is beneficial as it can decrease the length of time it takes for you to get an approval. Their experience in these cases allows them to know what information and documentation you need to receive the maximum amount of benefits.
What happens if my SSDI claim has been denied?
There are two reasons for the denial. The first is that the SSA indicates that you are not qualified for either the SSDI or the SSI program, or both. This is based on your work history, your household income, and your net worth. Generally, unless you believe they are making an error as to what you paid into the social security system or your income level, this is not something that attorneys generally appeal. The second is that the SSA determines that you are not medically qualified for benefits--meaning they believe that you are able to perform gainful employment or your medical condition doesn't qualify. This could be grounds for appeal.  There are four levels of appeal at the administrative or agency level. In order of application, you begin by filing an initial claim. You then file for reconsideration, you then go before an administrative law judge for a hearing, and finally, you can appeal the administrative law judge's decision before the appeals council. You can be approved or denied at any of those four levels. After you have exhausted all four agency levels, you can either start your application over and remain at the administrative level by filing a new initial claim. Or, you can file an appeal by the appeals counsel leaving the agency level and appealing to the federal district court.  
If I don’t have enough work history, or any at all, can I still receive benefits?
Although you may not be able to receive SSDI benefits, you can still apply for Supplemental Security Insurance. Since this is a program based on financial need, you can qualify for these benefits if you do not exceed the Social Security Administration’s limit for income and/or assets.

Win Your Social Security Disability Claim If you’re one of the 8.6 million American workers who are unable to work because of a physical or psychological condition, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and/or Supplemental Security Income.
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