Saturday, November 17, 2007

Social Security Disability Income - SSDI

What determines social security disability income? I've come across this topic several times and the simplest answer is that what an individual might potentially receive in social security disability income is equivalent to what they would receive at retirement age. This is because the entire purpose of the SSDI (social security disability insurance) program is to allow individuals who have become insured for SSDI benefits to receive them early if they become disabled and unable to work.

So, in answer to the question, "how much will I get if I get if I am approved for social security disability?", the answer is...the same amount that you are currently slated to receive for retirement. Of course, to learn the exact dollar amount you should contact the social security office.

Now, how do you receive social security disability income? You simply contact social security and request that an application for social security disability be taken. How do you contact SSA? You can do this online or you can do this by contacting a local office. Which option is preferable? I would personally advise contacting an office that is local to you. Why? Because it will be far easier for you to ask questions and have them answered. And,if you are like many disability applicants, you will have many questions about social security disability.

Once you initiate the social security disability process (in other words, by completing all the required disability forms and having a disability application interview), the process basically proceeds as follows:

1. The application will be forwarded to the agency in your state that handles disability determinations for the social security administration. In most states, this agency will be known as disability determination services, the bureau of disability determination, or the disability determination division.

2. Once it is received at this agency, it will be assigned to a disability specialist known as an examiner. This individualwill request all your medical records and, after receiving them, will work toward rendering a disability determination for your case.

3. If your case is approved, you will be notified by SSA and you will be sent information regarding your anticipated in-pay status. If your case is denied, you will be notified of this decision as well, as well as your available appeal rights.

4. If you decide to appeal your disability denial, you must file a request for reconsideration within sixty days of the date of your denial. In actuality, you have 65 days since SSA will give you an additional five days for mailing time. However, you should not delay in filing your appeal as this will only add more time to the process. How do you request the reconsideration appeal? Simply contact social security and they will forward the necessary forms to you.

If you choose at this point to obtain representation, of course, your disability lawyer can file your request for reconsideration for you and can even do it faster since a disability attorney will generally have the necessary forms on hand (eliminating the need to contact SSA and request that the appeal forms be mailed out)

Return to the Social Security Disability SSI Benefits Blog