Articles Tagged with “Supplemental Security Income”

If a disability is expected to last at least 12 months or end in death, then the disabled individual should apply for Social Security disability benefits. There are two types of Social Security disability benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI, also known as Title II benefits) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI, also known as Title XVI benefits). To learn the eligibility requirements of each program, read O’Ryan Law Firm’s article about Eligibility for SSDI and SSI benefits.

The process of applying for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA) may seem complex, but this article will explain what information is needed to apply and how to apply.

Information Needed to Apply

Before applying for Social Security disability benefits, the following materials should be gathered:

-Your Social Security number;

-An original or certified copy of your birth certificate and, if you were born in another country, proof of U.S. citizenship or legal residency;

-If you were in the military service, the original or certified copy of your military discharge papers (Form DD 214) for all periods of active duty;

-Your W-2 Form from last year or, if you were self-employed, your federal income tax return (IRS 1040 and Schedules C and SE);

-Direct deposit numbers (from a check, or ask your financial institution for the numbers) to have your monthly benefits deposited automatically;

-Information about any workers’ compensation claim you have filed, including date of injury, claim number, and proof of any payments made to you;

-The name, address, and phone number of someone who knows about your condition and can help with your claim;

-Information about your illnesses, injuries, and conditions, including dates of treatment, and patient ID numbers; and the names, addresses, and phone numbers of the medical providers who treated you. It is best to provide all treatment information beginning 12 months prior to your disability onset;

-Names and dates of medical tests you have had and who requested the tests;

-Names of medicines you are taking and who prescribed them. You may also want to include side effects from medications;

-Medical records that you already have in your possession; and
-A list of up to five jobs and dates you worked during the last 15 years prior to your disability onset.
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When applying for Social Security disability benefits, claimants should be aware of the two types of disability programs available. The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
For both programs, the SSA reviews whether the claimant meets the applicable definition of disabled. The SSA defines “disabled” as follows:

An individual shall be considered to be disabled for purposes of this title if he is unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than twelve months.

On the SSA’s website, the SSA further describes its standard of disability and how it decides whether the claimant is disabled. If adequate proof of disability is not provided, a claim for either SSDI or SSI benefits will be denied. If a claim for SSDI or SSI benefits is denied, the claimant has a maximum of 65 days to timely appeal.

Social Security Disability Insurance (Title II)

SSDI benefits act as a federal insurance program to workers. Taxes are deducted out of workers’ payroll checks. The tax deductions serve as a premium to qualify for SSDI. If a worker has earned 20 Social Security credits in 10 years, then they will have enough work credits to be eligible or SSDI benefits. The SSA’s website provides more details on how work credits are earned.

To be eligible for SSDI benefits, the claimant must also be under 65 years old. For SSDI claimants, there are no requirements that the claimant have a limited amount of resources. However, as of June 2014, the SSDI claimant cannot be earning $1070 per month in wages. Of course, to be eligible for SSDI benefits, claimants must meet all other work earnings requirements and proof of disability requirements.
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