What Do I Need to File a Disability Claim?

Disability benefits are designed to help those who are struggling due to a chronic condition or disability. Unfortunately, the system is so difficult to navigate and so strict on its rulings, that nearly 70% of all initial SSD claims are denied. However, being denied initially does not indicate that you have no claim to benefits.

If you need help filing a disability claim, a competent disability lawyer can help to ensure that you receive all of the benefits to which you are entitled.

What is Required to File a Disability Claim?

First and foremost, you must determine whether you are considered “disabled” by the standards of the social security administration. The criteria are as follows and you must meet all of them:

    • You are completely disabled.
    • You are unable to work.
    • Your disability is anticipated to last more than one year or will result in your death.

As part of the application to determine your disability status, you will be asked the following questions:

  1. “Are you Currently Working?” You need to earn less than $1,180 per month in order to be considered disabled by the SSA.
  2. “What is the Severity of Your Condition?” Your condition needs to be “significantly interfering with your work-related activities” in order for you to qualify on the basis of severity.
  3. Is Your Condition on the SSA’s List of Disabilities?” There is a long list of qualifying conditions as defined by the SSA.
  4. “Are You Able to do the Same Work as Before?” If your condition does not allow you to perform work that you had been able to complete regularly for 15 years prior to the onset of the disability, you would answer no to this question.
  5. “Are You Able to Do Any Other Type of Work?” While your condition may prevent you from performing your past work, in order to be considered disabled by the SSA, your disability needs to prevent you from performing other work as well.

Some of these questions can be tricky to answer and may confuse you due to the wording.

A qualified disability lawyer can help you determine your answers to these questions and make sure you receive the benefits to which you are entitled.

What Factors May Cause Me to be Denied Disability?

Being denied disability is quite common, as was stated earlier. Some of the reasons why someone may be denied disability are as follows. Note, however, that an attorney can help you appeal if you’ve been denied disability and you feel that this denial was in error.

  1. Disability Due to Drugs or Alcohol. 
  2. Some Criminal Charges.
  3. Failure/Refusal to Submit Medical Records.
  4. Lying or Fraud on Application.
  5. Short-Term Condition Causing Disability.

Final Thoughts

Navigating the SSA’s disability application can be disheartening and frustrating. However, you don’t have to do it alone. Disability lawyers are ready and willing to help you submit all of your materials, prepare for what to expect, and ensure that receive all of the benefits you deserve.