Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

Mobile Social Security Disability Law Blog

What can you do if cancer leads to a disability?

Millions of Americans fight cancer every year. In the best-case scenarios, those who suffer from some form of this illness are able to overcome it with treatment and go on to live full lives. However, the devastating effects of cancer can be more than some are able to overcome easily. For some, cancer can fundamentally alter their lives, becoming a disability.

So, what can Alabama residents do if cancer leads to a disability? Well, for starters, it is important to understand how cancer might become a disability, preventing a person from working and earning an income. There a many different kinds of cancer and, according to some sources, cancer is the second-leading cause of death in the world. But, in general, cancer can: leave a person with a general sense of fatigue; cause weight fluctuations; cause unexplained pain or discomfort; and can even lead to trouble breathing. Of course, there are many other symptoms caused by cancer. It is an illness that is seemingly different for every person who suffers from it.

How does going back to work impact SSD benefits?

Our readers in Alabama probably know how hard it is to be approved for Social Security Disability benefits. The Social Security Administration requires meticulous details in any application for SSD benefits, and many initial applications are denied. So, once someone has been approved for benefits, they don't want to think about what might happen if these benefits stop.

However, some people who are approved for SSD benefits are actually able to return to the workforce, as they recover from whatever injury or illness caused them to become disabled and unable to work in the first place. So, how does going back to work impact Social Security Disability benefits?

Qualifying for Supplemental Security Income in Alabama

Our readers in Alabama may have seen many of our previous posts here that describe the desperately needed financial help that Social Security Disability benefits provide to people who have injuries or illnesses that prevent them from continuing to work. However, there is another program that is administered by the Social Security Administration that can be just as crucial in terms of a financial lifeline: Supplemental Security Income, commonly referred to as "SSI."

SSI benefits are intended to help those who may not have the appropriate amount of work history to qualify to receive Social Security Disability benefits. In fact, in many cases, those who are approved to receive SSI benefits have never had a job at all due to their disabilities, while others meet the qualifying criteria that they are over the age of 65 and have limited means, or are blind.

TBIs and Social Security Disability Benefits

There are many different types of injuries that Alabama residents may suffer that could qualify them to receive Social Security Disability Benefits. However, perhaps the most impactful injury that a person could suffer is commonly referred to as a traumatic brain injury. After all, the brain is what makes the whole body go - if it is damaged, the impact on a person's life can be substantial.

Although the word traumatic is included in the classification of this type of injury, there is a range of what is referred to as mild TBIs to the more severe types of TBIs. With a mild TBI, a person may experience difficulty sleeping, fatigue and sensitivity to stimuli, such as sound and light. With the most severe type of TBIs, symptoms and permanent conditions can be quite limiting. For example, some people who suffer severe TBIs experience a loss of coordination, nausea, agonizing headaches and even seizures.

Cost-of-Living Adjustment for 2020

On October 22, 2019, Social Security Administration announced a 1.6% increase in benefits for 2020. This cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will be effective for Social Security disability beneficiaries for their December 2019 benefits that are payable in January of 2020. For SSI beneficiaries, the cost-of-living adjustment will be made for January 2020 but paid on December 31, 2019.

Does rheumatoid arthritis prevent you from earning a living?

Perhaps you watched your mother or grandmother struggle with aching, swollen joints that made it difficult for her to do the things she enjoyed. Maybe your father or grandfather had to give up those special hobbies because he no longer had the strength in his hands. Seeing the struggle and the loss of independence in your loved ones may have caused you to worry about your chances of developing the rheumatoid arthritis that gave them such pain and suffering.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory disease of the autoimmune system. It is not just a stiffening of the joints that occurs as you get older. If you saw someone in your family gradually lose mobility and energy because of RA, you may not be surprised that you are now facing the same issues. In fact, if your RA is making it more difficult to work, you may be considering applying for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration.

Suicide prevention plan may help veterans with various issues

Our country rightly devotes quite a bit of resources to military veterans. In the last couple of decades, many veterans' issues that were not previously in the spotlight have been pushed to the forefront, including the rate of suicides by veterans. It is heartbreaking to think of our nation's military veterans feeling so hopeless that they believe suicide is the only option. Fortunately, some bipartisan support for legislation may devote even more resources to this sensitive area.

According to a recent report, a proposed law known as the "Improve Well-Being for Veterans Act" is receiving support from both Republicans and Democrats in Congress. The hope is that this act can be passed into law relatively soon, so that military veterans who are at risk of suicide can be reached - and helped - by the Veterans' Administration.

Stop the Wait ACT

In September it was announced that U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) and U.S. Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX-35) authored a bill to eliminate the waiting period for Social Security Disability benefits. Currently, if someone is approved for Disability Insurance Benefits, which are the benefits you paid into when you were working, there is a 5-month waiting period before any payment can be received and a 24 month waiting period for Medicare benefits. This act would eliminate those wait times. This is especially important because both financial support and health insurance is critical to those who are disabled.

Working to help veterans get the benefits they deserve

United States servicemembers work hard to protect our country. When they leave the service and achieve veteran status, they deserve to have a country that works hard to take care of their needs. That is why veterans' benefits exist, and our law firm works hard to help veterans get the benefits they deserve.

Unfortunately, the process of getting veterans' benefits can sometimes seem complicated to those who are applying for those benefits. And, these days there are many veterans in America who have specific needs to address. The Veterans' Administration can become bogged down with the number of issues that must be addressed. Fortunately, with the right approach, many veterans are able to receive the help they need.

Spinal cord injuries can lead to a disability

There are all kinds of injuries that can cause Alabama residents to become disabled and unable to work to earn an income. However, typically only the most serious of injuries will qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. Spinal cord injuries can be devastating and may qualify an Alabama resident to receive SSD benefits.

Any type of damage to the spinal cord can impact a person's ability to control other parts of the body. Paralysis is a medical term that many of our readers are likely familiar with, and this can occur when the spinal cord is injured. One of the biggest problems with spinal cord injuries is that they are usually unique injuries, and medical treatment and surgery may not effective. A spinal cord injury is usually life-long.

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