Frequently Asked Questions About Social Security Disability
If a disability prevents you from working, you may qualify for federal disability benefits. However, the process of getting benefits can be intimidating, and you likely have many questions about it.
That’s where I come in. I’m William R. Long. For more than 35 years, I have fought for Social Security Disability (SSD) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits on behalf of people with disabilities from all walks of life. I am passionate about providing the skilled and hands-on guidance you deserve throughout the process.
Read on for general answers to common questions about SSD benefits. For specific guidance, contact me at 318-562-1440 to take advantage of a free consultation.
Who can qualify for SSD benefits?
To qualify for SSD, you must meet the following criteria:
- You have an adequate work history
- You currently are unable to work in any capacity because of a qualifying disability or medical condition
- Your condition is long-term, meaning it’s terminal or expected to last at least 12 months
If you’re not sure whether you qualify, contact me. I can review your situation and assess whether you’re eligible.
What counts as a qualifying disability?
The Social Security Administration maintains a list of qualifying conditions that automatically count as a disability. However, other impairments – whether physical or mental – can also qualify, provided they are severe enough to either result in death or limit your ability to work in any capacity for at least a year.
Many delayed and denied claims involve disputes over whether a condition qualifies as a disability. Getting solid medical evidence is critical for proving your claim.
How long does the SSD claims process take?
As with most government programs, the SSD process takes time. Expect to wait around three to five months for an initial determination after you submit your application. If you get denied, you have 60 days to file an appeal. The appeal process takes another six to 12 months. Additional appeals can further lengthen the process.
By seeking skilled legal guidance at the outset, you can minimize your risk of getting wrongly denied and avoid unnecessary delays.
What’s the difference between SSI and SSD?
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is another disability benefits program managed by the federal Social Security Administration. Unlike SSD, SSI doesn’t require applicants to have a work history. However, it’s a needs-based program, which means their income and assets must remain below a certain threshold.
People receiving SSI benefits automatically qualify for Medicaid. Those on SSD eventually qualify for Medicare after a waiting period.
Can I work part-time or full-time while on SSDI?
The SSD program is designed to meet the needs of those unable to engage in substantially gainful employment due to disabilities. If you earn more than a certain amount per month, you could lose your SSD benefits.
However, certain incentive programs do allow recipients to return to work, including on a trial basis, without jeopardizing their benefits. You must stay within the parameters of these programs, however, which is why it’s critical to talk with a lawyer such as myself before starting work while on SSD. I can advise you on how best to go about it without losing your benefits.
Can I qualify for both SSD and workers’ comp?
Few people realized that if their disabling medical condition is the result of a work-related accident or illness, they may qualify for both workers’ compensation benefits and SSD benefits. The workers’ comp process has strict deadlines so it’s important to talk with a lawyer sooner rather than later about your options. I can review your situation to determine whether you qualify and help you navigate the process to pursue the maximum benefits you deserve.
Get Help Pursuing The SSD Benefits You Deserve
I offer free consultations and contingency fee representation, so you have nothing to lose by reaching out today for a free, confidential consultation. You can also call my office in Bossier City, Louisiana, at 318-562-1440. I handle SSD claims throughout the Shreveport-Bossier City metro area.