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Social Security Disability Benefit

Updated on August 8, 2012

Nobody expects to become disabled in their lifetime; the mere thought of disability holds a perception of what can not ever be. Unfortunately, if you become disabled, no one holds your hand to tell you how its legally done and you must know how to deal with it. How does one fill out the application form? What is the criteria and which types of applicants are the most selective?

Let`s start with who gets the social security benefits: those people with a severe medical condition expected to last more than one year or result in death and which prevents them from working. The benefits are given within the first 6 months of the diagnosis of the disability. People on short term disability do not gain the advantages of social security.

How and When to Apply for Social Security Disability Benefits

It is advised that you apply for disability benefits as soon as you become disabled because there is a 3-5 month processing period. Begin by first filling out an application for Social Security Benefits and the Adult Disability Report, either online or by printing it out, and then sending it to your local Social Security office.

The numerous advantages for applying online for disability benefits include:

  • No need to make an appointment or visit the local office, you can simply work online
  • Working conveniently from your home computer or visiting the local library at your convenience
  • Saves the precious time and gas money it would take to go to the office

You will need the following documents and information to receive disability benefits:

  • Social Security number
  • Birth certificate
  • The dates, names, addresses, and phone numbers of your visits to doctors' offices, hospitals, clinics
  • Names and respective strengths of all the medications currently consuming
  • Medical records
  • Test results of all of blood works
  • Brief description of your job and the kinds of jobs you have performed
  • Copy of the most current Wages and Tax Statement or W2 form
  • Federal tax return for the past year if you are self-employed

List of Impairments

4.Is your medical condition severe enough to prevent you from working at your job any further? If yes, you are declared disabled. Let's take a look at the last step.

5. If you are unable to do the same work you were doing before, you can still do other work. The state agency will check thoroughly to see if you have other skills, education or experiences that could be helpful in another, less strenuous job. If they find that you have some other skills and can perform a job, you are not disabled. But if you do not have other skills, or experiences the state agency will decide that you are disabled.

Receiving the First Check of Social Security Disability Benefits

The state agency will inform you that your application has been approved and send you a letter about the amount of your monthly benefit amount with the effective date. Your average lifetime earnings determines how much you will receive on a monthly basis. You will get your first check within the six months the date your disability was approved.For example, if your disability was approved on October 23rd, your first disability benefit for April will be given in May since Social Security benefits are generally paid the month following the month they are due.

Family Memeber who qualifies for Disability Benefits

Your family member may also qualify for social security disability benefits if they meet the following qualifications:

  • Spouse is 62 or older
  • Spouse is caring for a child who is younger than sixteen and that child is disabled
  • Unmarried children younger than age 18 or 19 who are attending high school full time
  • Unmarried child older than 18 who has a disability before the age 22.

Each qualified family member will receive 50 percent of your monthly benefit earning.

Note: If you have an outstanding arrest warrant, you should inform the agency if you are involved in any pending arrest case or have felony charges in that month. In this situation the state agency will not issue you the payment you would have received for that month. The felony charges include:

  • Unlawful action to avoid prosecution
  • A denied custody battle

8 Points to Remember : Social Security Disability Benefits

1.Disability benefit amounts may change if you are receiving any other government aids.

2. Once you have completed 2 years of social security disability benefit, you are automatically enrolled in the Medicare plan. You will receive a medicare card in the mail after the enrollment period has passed.

3. Once you start receiving benefits, you should try going back to work. There is an incentive program for people who want to try their ability at working again. You will still receive your monthly benefits.

4. You will receive your benefits as long as you are disabled.

5. The only case your eligibility for disability benefits may change if your health is improving and you would like to work again. You are responsible to let the state agency know if your health has improved or you want to go back to work.

6. Your case will be reviewed from time to time to see that you are still qualified for the benefit. You will be informed by the social security office when the review times are approaching.

7.You can make an Internet Appeal in case of your application has been denied. The state agency will reconsider your case and their decision.

8. If your application is denied for medical reasons, you can complete and submit the required Appeal Request and Appeal Disability Report online.


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    • urmilashukla23 profile image

      Urmila 5 years ago from Rancho Cucamonga,CA, USA

      Thanks CyberShelley for commenting and voting up!

    • CyberShelley profile image

      Shelley Watson 5 years ago

      Very interesting and valuable insight on disability benefits, definitely voted up and useful