4 Tips When Applying For Social Security Disability Benefits

21 July 2017
 Categories: Law, Blog


Have you become disabled and are unable to work? Social security disability benefits are designed to help people who are unable to work. If you are thinking about filing for benefits, check out these four tips you should follow when filing your social security disability claim.

Don't Wait to File Your Claim

One major qualifier for social security disability benefits is your inability to work for an extended period of time: typically at least a year. However, this doesn't mean you have to prove you haven't worked for the previous year. It means you have to prove you won't be able to work for at least a year, even if you haven't been disabled for long.

As soon as you and your doctor believe your disability is long lasting, start filing your disability claim. If you file too soon, there may not be enough documentation to prove your injury will prevent you from working for at least a year. If you wait too long, all you're doing is struggling to survive while you try to pay your bills with no income.

Keep Going to Your Doctor for Treatment

Whether your disability is new or something you've been dealing with for a while, you need to seek treatment from a doctor. Going to the doctor is the best way to help prove you are honestly disabled because it shows you had enough problems to seek help. It also ensures that your doctor has all the necessary medical records to prove your case.

If you do try to apply for social security disability benefits without having a doctor, it's likely they'll insist you see a doctor, and it may be one they appoint. In the medical records, the reviewers will also be looking for any signs that your disability could improve with treatment, exercise, etc., enough for you to return to work.  

Watch How Much You Earn

When you're receiving social security disability benefits, you may believe you have no right to work, but that isn't the case. If you are still able to work some, you can still receive benefits as long as you aren't making too much. Once you make more than the permitted amount, it's seen as substantial gainful activity or SGA, which means you're benefiting too much from being on social security and don't need it.

Be mindful of how much you earn. Just because one month you have enough energy to make $1,500 doesn't mean you'll be able to keep it up every month. You'll also want to watch how many hours you work. If you're working plenty of hours, even if you aren't making too much money, you could be disqualified.

Hire an Attorney

Chances are good that your initial claim will be denied because about 70 percent are denied on their first submission. While there's nothing wrong with filing the initial claim yourself, if it does get denied, you need to hire an attorney to help you. Usually, claims are denied because they just don't have all the information needed to prove the disability.

If your claim is denied, your attorney will likely suggest appealing instead of submitting a new claim with new information because that only wastes time. The chances of having your appeal approved is much higher than having an entirely new claim approved.

If you are unable to work because of a disability, you don't have to struggle with paying the bills or force yourself to work when you can't. Social security disability benefits are there to help you support yourself and your family. If you would like more information regarding social security disability, contact a social security lawyer in your area today.