In New York, a worker who suffers a serious injury and is prevented from completing their job qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits. It is important to make sure you understand the details of the Social Security Disability system to understand what makes you eligible, what types of benefits are available to you, how long you may receive compensation, and what to do if your claim is denied. At The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C., our New York City Social Security Disability lawyers are determined to make sure our clients and potential clients are aware of their rights. We have provided a step-by-step guide to Social Security Disability Benefits for you to reference when you may have a question.
Types of Social Security Disability
Depending on the severity of the injury or disability and the amount of time a person will be out of work, the Social Security Administration may pay disability benefits in one of two ways. These are:
- Social Security Disability Insurance Program
- Supplemental Security Income
Supplemental Security Income is paid out to workers who endure a total and long-term disability. Social Security Disability Benefits are usually paid out to individuals who would either be out of work for at least 12 months or who suffer an illness or disability that is likely to lead to death. The qualifications may also differ based on age and duration of time worked.
Determining If You Have a Claim
If you have suffered some kind of injury or illness, the disability must fall under one of the categories listed by the Social Security Administration. The list of disabilities reaches into the hundreds and fall under various categories ranging from skin disorders, mental disorders, and respiratory system disabilities to cardiovascular system conditions, cancer, and more.
You also have a burden of proof to show that the disability exists and is legitimate. The Social Security Administration will require acceptable medical records that they would request from your doctor with your permission. There are also certain jobs that would make it so employees do not qualify for SSD benefits such as local and state government employees, railroad workers, individuals under 21 who work for their parents, and federal employees hired before 1984.
The Social Security Administration will take a five-step process to determine if you are disabled and eligible for benefits. The five questions involved include:
- Is the individual working?
- Does he or she have a serious disability?
- Does the disability fall on the SSD list?
- Does the disability alter the individual’s ability to work like before?
- Can other types of work be performed?
After determining this, they will either deny or approve a claim for Social Security Disability Benefits. If they approve a claim, the individual will begin receiving benefits. If they deny the claim, the individual may be able to appeal the denial.
Appealing a Denial
To appeal a denied application for Social Security Disability Benefits, you will need the list of medications, your updated medical records, any documents listing a change in medical history since last application, and any other information that would support your claim. Roughly 70% of claims for Social Security Disability Benefits are denied the first time around. The Social Security Administration will go through four levels when considering an appeal. These four levels are:
- Reconsideration of the claim
- Hearing before an Administrative Law Judge
- Review by the Appeals Council
- Review by the Federal Court
At The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C., our team is well aware of what the Social Security Administration looks for during the initial application process as well as appeals. If you need help applying for Social Security Disability Administration, we encourage you to contact our firm.