Applying for government benefits is sometimes necessary, but almost always frustrating! Regulations and requirements are hard to understand. However, failing to follow directions can lead to a denial of benefits. If your mom or dad is disabled and searching for help, you may be asking yourself, “How can I help my parent apply for disability benefits?”
What type of disability benefits are available?
Talk to your mom or dad to learn more about their need for disability benefits. Ask if they’re comfortable sharing their medical condition. You’ll also need to ask about their financial condition and ability to work. Remember, you are not just being nosy – you are helping them find the benefit programs that fit.
Social Security Disability Insurance benefits are offered to people with qualifying disabilities and the correct amount of work credits earned before becoming disabled. The SSA’s list of impairments is long, but not all qualifying conditions are listed. Basically, the SSA will look closely at your parent’s answers to the following questions:
- Are you working?
- Does your condition limit your ability to do basic work for at least twelve months or lead to death within 12 months?
- Can you continue the same work you did before the medical condition started?
- Are you able to do any other kind of work?
Once you and your parent decide that SSDI or SSI benefits are possible, you’ll need to apply.
How do you apply for disability benefits?
You can do so online, by phone, or by visiting a local Social Security office. Your parent will have to provide a lot of documentation, including:
- Proof of Eligibility like: birth certificate or similar proof of birth, U.S. citizenship or lawful alien status, U.S. military discharge papers if they served before 1968, W-2 forms or self-employment tax returns; adult disability report, medical records your parent has, workers’ compensation-type benefits.
- Answers to Questions like: name, gender, Social Security number, date and place of birth, citizenship status, prior benefit history, active military service, railroad employment, expected pension and annuity benefits, marital status and spouse’s information, information about children, workers’ compensation benefits received, self-employment information, date and type of disability, and so on.
You can help your parent gather all the information the SSA is likely to need before applying. At some point, your parent may talk to the SSA in person or on the phone. You can help settle their nerves and encourage them to provide complete answers.
The Best Thing You Can Do Is Help Them Find an Attorney!
Get the help of an experienced Social Security attorney. The Social Security Disability Insurance application process can be long and frustrating. Your parent needs someone on his or her side who understands the system.
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.