If you have a physical or mental condition that prevents you from working, you may be able to qualify for benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA), no matter what age you are. Whether Social Security considers you “disabled” is determined by whether you are able to perform any “substantial gainful activity.” SSA may consider you disabled under its rules if:
- You cannot do your past relevant work
- You cannot adjust to less demanding work because of your medical conditions
- Your disability has lasted, or is likely to last, for at least one year (or is expected to result in death).
Social Security pays only for total disability expected to last for one year. Social Security will not award benefits for a partial disability or for a disability expected to last less than one year.
Applying for Social Security disability benefits is a complex legal process. You must prove you are “disabled” according to very specific, and at times, complicated rules. You may think that if you explain your medical condition to Social Security, they will approve your claim and award you disability benefits. Unfortunately, that is not the way Social Security works. There are many different factors that Social Security considers in determining disability, including your age, education, and past relevant work experience, in addition to your medical conditions. Your medical conditions and resulting limitations must be supported by detailed doctors’ records describing your limitations in your daily and work-related activities. The fact that your doctor may have advised you not to work due to your condition unfortunately does not necessarily mean that Social Security will agree you are disabled.
Why are SSDI Benefit Applications Denied?
Statistically, most claimants are denied after their application and then again after they file the appeal (called the Reconsideration). It is likely you will get these two denials and then be required to attend a hearing, particularly if you are under the age of 50. You may be denied benefits if your doctor does not include records that support the legal definition of disability, or if a Social Security employee fails to obtain your medical evidence on your behalf. You can also lose your case if an appeal is handled improperly or untimely.
Call a Wilmington Attorney for Help Applying for Social Security Disability Benefits
The attorneys at Doroshow, Pasquale, Krawitz & Bhaya are available to answer your questions, explain your rights, and advocate for you at every step of applying for Social Security Disability benefits in Wilmington. Call us today to set up your free consultation.