For several years, Patty’s lung condition had worsened. Now, getting to work was a daily struggle. Patty and her family needed her income, and she did not know what they do if she couldn’t work anymore. She wanted to apply for disability benefits but did not know what evidence of disability was required. In this article, we will look at the claimant’s responsibility for proving their condition.
Benefits Available for Disability or Blindness
People who are unable to work due to a disabling condition or blindness may be eligible for disability benefits. The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers two basic disability programs: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI).
Not everyone can qualify for SSDI and SSI. One of the main requirements is that the applicant has a disabling condition. Claimants who meet all requirements may be approved for monthly benefit payments.
The SSA’s Assessment
As an application for benefits moves through the system, workers from the SSA review the applicant’s documentation.
To qualify for SSDI:
- You must have earned enough work credits, and
- You must have a disabling condition.
Qualifying for SSI is a little different. You must be disabled, but unlike SSDI, you must show financial need to receive SSI benefits.
The Claimant’s Responsibility
Initially, the claimant must complete an application, talk to the SSA workers, and provide all documentation that is requested. Specifically, the SSA requires claimants to do the following:
- Provide all known information and evidence relating to his or her disability or blindness.
- Continue providing this information on an ongoing basis.
The evidence must be detailed and complete enough to prove:
- The nature of the impairments,
- How severe the impairment is,
- How long the claimant has been impaired, and
- Whether the claimant can perform work-related physical and mental activities.
In most cases, the SSA may contact medical providers for more information. Additionally, they may set up consultative examinations with independent medical sources.
Filing for Disability Benefits? Make Sure You Provide Evidence of Disability.
Applying for SSDI and SSI benefits can be confusing, frustrating, and time-consuming. All this at a time when you are already hurting. It certainly helps to have someone on your side who understands the application process.
At The Law Offices of Martin Taller, your case gets the attention and care of experienced Social Security Disability attorneys. Call us at 714-385-8100 to set up a free consultation. Though our office is conveniently located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.