Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a lifeblood for disabled Americans. The difference between being approved for SSDI and denied eligibility means more than just a regular income check. Disability approval also means the claimant is entitled to Medicare benefits after a two-year waiting period.
Approval for SSDI requires that the applicant:
- Meet the long-term work history requirements. Workers need to prove they met the work-length credits for their age bracket. For example, if you are 46 years of age, you must show you worked six years during your life. Workers 62 and older must show they worked 10 years.
- Meet the short-term work history criteria. Generally, applicants need to show they worked five out of the last 10 years.
- Prove that he/she will be unable to work for at least a year because of a disability. The disability must meet the Social Security Administration of disability.
- Prove that you’re not engaged in substantial work activity. In 2018, that means an applicant must prove he/she is earning less than $1,180 per month; $1,970 for blind applicants.
The steps an experienced SSDI lawyer will take to help you
An experienced Maryville Social Security Disability lawyer will:
- Review your work history by getting detailed statements from your employers and copies of your tax returns.
- Explain whether you meet the short-term and long-term work requirements
- Examine your current income, if any, to show you are financially eligible for SSDI
- Help you prove that your income level should be reduced by any necessary expenses to manage your disability
Most of the work a respected Disability lawyer will do will be to help you prove you meet the SSDI definition of disability. The attorney will explain that:
- SSDI has a predefined list of impairments that qualify an applicant for disability. The list includes diseases such as cancer, respiratory disorders, immune system disorders, heart disease, skin disorders, and other types of serious health conditions. The lawyer will work with your physicians to show that your condition is on the impairment list.
- You can still be eligible if your medical condition is not on the impairment list. We work with doctors who can verify that your combination of medical problems shows that you can’t work – that your medical condition is essentially equivalent to one of the disorders on the impairment list.
- You can be eligible if you can prove that you have limited function of your body. The lawyer will explain that SSDI uses a “grid” system to evaluate your work ability. The grid looks at your age, education, and functional abilities to determine if you can or can’t work. This standard can often help older workers who have little education. Functional ability includes the ability to reason, perform manual labor, walk, read, or the skill to do other work-related tasks.
The attorney will also explain whether you are eligible for Disability if you are an immigrant who has paid social security taxes.
Most applicants don’t understand the requirements and what type of medical evidence is required to prove the applicant is disabled. At Kevin Shepherd and Associates, P.C. our Maryville Social Security Disability lawyers understand these complicated requirements. We have a strong record of success working with your doctors and independent physicians. We help you prepare your case and we represent you at the SSDI hearing. If you are in dire need and your medical condition is terminal, we often can get your hearing moved to the front of the line. Please call us at 865-225-9655 or complete the contact form to schedule a time to discuss your case