The process for applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits can be daunting. Many people are unsure of where to start, and are intimidated by the large number of applicants who are denied benefits each year.
One of the first questions we are often asked as Social Security disability attorneys is if the individual even qualifies for SSDI benefits. While it can be challenging to determine each individual’s eligibility—especially since many people suffer from several ailments simultaneously—we have included some of the basic requirements for disability benefits below.
Are You Eligible to Receive Social Security Disability Benefits?
SSDI benefits are benefits that you work hard to earn, and have paid for over your working life through FICA taxes. Depending on the length and recency of your work history (it varies based on your age), you may have already met the work requirements to be eligible for SSDI, so let’s look at some of the other qualifiers:
- You are unable to work because of a disability
- You have medical records to that support your disability
- You have been, or are expected to be, disabled and unable to work for at least 12 months
- You are under the age of 65
The Social Security Administration provides a comprehensive list of qualifying disabilities, and here is an example of just a few:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spine injuries
- Multiple sclerosis
- High blood pressure or cholesterol
- Heart conditions
- HIV-positive diagnosis
- Mental impairments such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or PTSD
Each condition has its own set of guidelines and standards for being considered a disability, and solid medical evidence of your conditions and treatments provided by your physician can greatly help your case. Remember, be sure to list all of your conditions when applying for SSDI—not just the one that you consider disabling—because their effects will be considered as a combined whole.
Whether you have just begun the application process or you have already been denied benefits, seeking the assistance of a Social Security disability attorney now can greatly help your cause. To schedule a free consultation with our firm, call our office or begin a live chat now.