The Best Questions to Ask About Social Security Disability

Dealing with a long-term injury or illness can reshape your daily life from the clothes you wear to the work you’re able to perform around the house. These fundamental changes present no shortage of financial challenges and confusion about how you’re going to continue to pay bills in spite of your inability to work. Our Philadelphia disability lawyers tackle these concerns all the time for our clients, and have compiled a brief list of the best information out there for applying for Social Security Disability benefits. While the list is far from exhaustive, it covers our most common client questions.

Does Age Affect SSD Eligibility?

The short answer is, yes, it does. The longer version is that the federal government bases Social Security benefits eligibility on your working history. If you’re under 18 years old, chances are you don’t have enough working credits to qualify through paying sufficient taxes. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is available for minors to provide some form of financial assistance while a parent is disabled and unable to work of if the child is disabled. There are slight differences in the application process for children and adults. For example, the Social Security Administration requires the child to interview with an SSA representation, whereas adults do not. Once the child turns 18, the SSA reviews the child’s status and determines if they meet the standards for adult disability.

What Happens When I Reach Retirement Age?

When you reach full retirement age (about 67 years old depending on when you were born), the SSA converts your disability payments into retirement payments. No application is necessary and you should not see an interruption in your monthly payments. The most important aspect of this change is the relaxing of income restrictions associated with SSD benefits. This means you may be able to pursue a business venture you may not have had the ability to do before and earn a little more money to make your retirement comfortable.

How Much Does My Attorney Charge?

Having an attorney, like our Philadelphia disability lawyers, assist you through the SSD application process is vital because their help reduces the chances of an error in your paperwork causing a denial of benefits. This leads to faster approvals and you receiving the money you desperately need. Your attorney doesn’t take any money out of your pocket to do this work on your behalf. Instead, they appeal directly to the federal government for a percentage of your total SSD award amount, which comes from the federal government and is capped at a percentage of your total benefits amount. At no point should your attorney send you a bill for their services, and if they cannot recover benefits for you, there’s no reason why they should look to charge you for their services. They didn’t do their job — why should they get paid from your misfortune?

If you or someone you love is suffering with a condition doctors believe will prevent them from working for at least a year or more, you may be eligible for disability benefits through the federal government. Call our experienced Philadelphia disability lawyers or our New Jersey disability benefits attorneys today for your free consultation to discuss your situation and what we can do to help.

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