The process of applying for Social Security Disability (SSD) can be arduous. Besides the tons of supporting documents to submit, trying to understand the SSD terminology can leave you feeling as though you are learning a foreign language. Further, you may be wondering how you will support yourself and family in light of your inability to work.
To help boost your chances of getting the benefits you may be entitled to, here are a couple of things you need to know when applying for SSD benefits.
You need medical proof of your disability
As the name suggests, your eligibility for SSD benefits is based solely on your disability. As such, an SSD application must be accompanied by proof of your disability. You will need much more than your doctor’s note stating that “This applicant is disabled” to get past this requirement. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has very clear criteria on what qualifies for a disability as well as the different types and severity of injuries. They also specify the type of medical documentation you need to submit to substantiate your disability claim.
You must have worked for long enough to qualify for SSD benefits
Because SSD is funded by employees’ Social Security taxes, an applicant is required to have work for a minimum period to qualify for the benefits. Also known as the “duration of work” or “recent work” tests, the number of quarters you must work to be eligible for SSD benefits depends on your age at the time of becoming disabled as well as how long you had been employed on the date of your disability. It is important to note that eligibility is not based on your income.
If you suffer from an illness or a medical condition that prevents you from working, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. While applying for your benefits, it is important that you submit the correct supporting documentation to boost your chances of getting approval. The timing of your application is also very important. It may be helpful to obtain legal guidance as you go through this process.