It’s not always easy to know if you have a disability or not. How the Social Security Administration processes your claim may also be a complete mystery. In this blog, we will look at your disability claim through the eyes of the Social Security Administration (SSA).
The Application Process
First, of course, you will complete an application and submit it. You may also need to submit documents that support your claim for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.
Later, an SSA representative will interview you in person or by telephone. Your application, medical records, work history, and so on may be reviewed before the SSA decides whether you qualify for disability benefits.
How the Social Security Administration Determines Disability
Two points must be proven:
- You cannot do any substantial work because of your medical condition; and
- Your medical condition(s) must have lasted, or be expected to last, at least one year or be expected to result in your death.
In fact, the SSA uses a five-question test to prove the points listed above:
- Are you working? If so, are you making more than $1,220 a month? If so, your disability claim may be denied. However, if you are not working, the SSA will send your application to the Disability Determination Services (DDS) office. Representatives of this office will ask the next four question.
- Is your condition “severe”? Does your condition ‘significantly limit’ your ability to perform basic work for at least 12 months? If so, you may be considered disabled and move to the next questions. If you are still able to do basic work like lifting, standing, walking, sitting, and remembering, your claim may be denied.
- Is your condition found on the list of disabling conditions? The SSA maintains a list of impairments that contains, among other things, detailed information about the type and severity of potentially disabling conditions. The list is extensive, but your claim may be denied if your condition does not appear on the list of impairments.
- Can you do the work you did previously? If you are still able to perform work from any of your previous jobs, the SSA may reject your disability claim.
- Can you do any other type of work? If your answer to the previous question was “no,” then the SSA will see if you can perform any other kinds of work.
Not Sure Whether You Have a Disability?
In addition to a determination of disability, you must have enough work credits to qualify for SSDI. However, SSI is based on need, not your work credits.
The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have helped many clients receive the disability benefits they deserve. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.