Workers disabled because of a medical condition may be entitled to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Also available are Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits to certain individuals who meet income requirements. However, applying for SSDI and SSI can be complicated. The Social Security Administration (SSA) denies benefits to most people who apply. It is important for disabled individuals to understand their rights and obtain qualified legal counsel when applying for benefits. The Philadelphia Social Security disability lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP have guided many disabled workers through this application process to ensure they obtain the benefits to which they are entitled by law.
SSDI and SSI are two distinct programs administered by the SSA.
Both programs assist working-age adults who have a mental or physical disability that prevents them from participating in the workforce.
The exact amount of money that a disabled worker can expect to receive from SSDI will depend on how much they paid in FICA taxes over the years. As a result, the application process requires individuals to provide detailed information about the amount of money they earned, as well as the names and addresses of employers they had during the past 15 years, and the dates of employment at each job.
A monthly SSDI payment may also depend on whether an individual is receiving any other type of lump sum, permanent, or temporary compensation from other sources, including the following:
The SSA does not factor in Veterans Administration (VA) benefits when calculating SSDI benefits. Also, the SSA does not pay out benefits immediately after approving an application; there is usually a delay of at least six months.
The medical eligibility rules for SSDI and SSI are not the same as for Workers’ Compensation or other programs that provide temporary or partial disability benefits. The Social Security Act defines disability as:
There are many types of medical conditions that may fit this definition, including:
Applicants must also be able to show that their disability prevents them from doing any type of work, not just the job that they held most recently. To prove they have a disability that meets this definition, applicants must provide detailed information about their medical condition, as well as the following:
Individuals who have been denied SSDI or SSI benefits should contact a Social Security disability lawyer who can provide professional counsel regarding their rights. Individuals must file a reconsideration before requesting a hearing before a judge. During the hearing, individuals must present testimony regarding their disability. A vocational expert may be present at the hearing to testify regarding the individual’s ability to work. Individuals also have the right to have a lawyer represent them at the hearing.
Galfand Berger LLP guides many workers through the complicated process of collecting evidence about their medical condition and obtains the proof needed to show they are no longer able to participate in the workforce. In addition to representing individuals, Galfand Berger LLP also won a landmark decision in a federal court case regarding disabled steelworkers’ rights to disability income benefits. The following two cases are examples of how Galfand Berger LLP has helped disabled workers obtain SSDI benefits:
More than one in four adults become disabled before they retire. Many of these disabled workers turn to Social Security disability benefits as a critical source of financial support.
Millions of disabled workers have their claims denied each year. The Philadelphia Social Security disability lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP are experienced at helping disabled individuals collect the evidence they need to obtain a favorable decision. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-222-8792 or contact us online. Located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, Pennsylvania, we proudly serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Allentown and Harrisburg.