Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

Mobile Social Security Disability Law Blog

Cost-of-living increase coming for veterans' benefits

For many military veterans in Alabama, the benefits they receive are crucial to their finances. Particularly those who receive disability benefits, as they may have a limited ability to work and earn an income. Fortunately, each year Congress usually passes legislation to increase veterans' benefits with a cost-of-living adjustment. This year, according to reports, is no different.

The reports indicate that toward the end of September of this year, the president signed the appropriate legislation to implement the cost-of-living adjustment - commonly known as "COLA" - so that the adjustment will go into effect as usual. The adjustment for veterans' benefits will be the same as the one that will go into effect for Social Security benefits.

Depressive disorders may qualify you for disability benefits

Some days are good, and some are bad. You may be tired of having to explain yourself to others, or perhaps you don't even bother. You are not upset or feeling blue. You are not weak or a hypochondriac. You have one of the most frequently misunderstood mental health conditions: depression.

If you have found a doctor who recognized your symptoms and is providing the level of care you need, you are fortunate. Many struggle for years without a diagnosis and end up overmedicated or left to suffer on their own. However, a diagnosis is not enough if your condition is debilitating. If your depressive disorder makes it impossible for you to earn a living, you may be eligible to seek disability benefits through the Social Security Administration.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

This year, I am the Co-Chair for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Event. The Making Strides for Breast Cancer Board is comprised of people from all over Mobile, Alabama.  Each of us have different jobs, different interests and different lifestyles.  But what we do have in common is the drive to help in any way to find a cure for breast cancer.  Many of us on the board have been personally touched by breast cancer - some of the board members are survivors, some of the board members are family members of a survivor, and some of the board members have lost loved ones to breast cancer.  A huge part of finding a cure, is raising money for research and resources. 

Pushing through the difficult SSD benefits application process

Our readers in Alabama who are familiar with our previous posts know that the process to apply for Social Security Disability benefits can be quite arduous. The Social Security Administration is strict about the eligibility requirements that must be met for disabled workers to receive SSD benefits. At first glance, the requirements and eligibility criteria that must be met can seem pretty daunting. However, if disabled workers believe they are entitled to SSD benefits, it is important to push through what can be a difficult process.

It is crucial to make the initial application for Social Security Disability benefits as strong as possible. If an initial application for SSD benefits is approved, Alabama residents don't need to worry about the multiple layers of the appeals process that are available for those whose initial applications are denied.

Lifelines Counseling Services

I have been privileged to serve on the Board of Directors of Lifelines Counseling Services since 2018.  Lifelines is an amazing local organization that provides family counseling, credit counseling, and crisis services.  The staff and volunteers at Lifelines help people in their darkest hours and are a beacon of light in our community.  From marital counseling to suicide prevention programs to the Rape Crisis Center to housing and debt counseling, Lifelines provides a holistic approach to managing life's challenges to help families and individuals live more productive lives.  Lifelines is integral to sustaining our community.

How your income and resources impact SSI eligibility

Our readers in Alabama may know that Supplemental Security Income is a benefit that is designed by the government to help some of the most financially disadvantaged individuals out there. However, what is lesser known about SSI is that there are strict eligibility guidelines that must be met to be approved to receive SSI. An applicant's income and financial resources could impact SSI eligibility.

The first part of qualifying for SSI may seem relatively straightforward: the applicant must be 65-years-old or older, blind or disabled. However, unlike Social Security Disability benefits, which are based on a person's work history, SSI can be received by those who do not have a significant work history. Instead, applicants for SSI must not exceed a certain threshold for income earned or available financial resources.

MAKING A DIFFERENCE ONE STEP AT A TIME

I am the Chair for the 2nd year for the Making Strides walk here in my hometown of Mobile, Alabama. The Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk of South Alabama is a walk to raise funds to end the fight against breast cancer. The American Cancer Society and our committee consists of men and women in all avenues of life who have come together to make this walk successful. We have so many people who have been touched by breast cancer, both survivors and fighters, friends and family right here in our city that this walk is vital to the future of those who face this disease.

Adjusting to post-service life, a significant issue for veterans

With the recent anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks that changed the very nature of our country and, indeed, the world, it is important to remember that America has been on a "war footing" for over a decade now. Thousands of young men and women in our country are veterans who have been exposed to the traumatizing nature of war. Adjusting to post-service life for these veterans when their time in the service is over can be a significant issue.

A recent news article pointed out that young veterans, in particular, may have a hard time adjusting to civilian life. According to one recent survey, one-sixth of young veterans described the adjustment to civilian life as "very difficult." There are a variety of factors that may come into play to make this transition tough.

Suffering an injury could mean you are eligible for SSD benefits

There are millions of people in America who receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. For most of these people, SSD benefits are a crucial financial lifeline, since the individuals who are eligible to receive SSD benefits are no longer able to work, for the most part. Alabama residents may find that they are eligible to receive SSD benefits for a variety of reasons. Suffering an injury could be one such reason.

Many people who suffer some type of injury usually expect to recover, at some point. However, injuries may be so severe that people simply do not make a full recovery, through no fault of their own. Every day people are injured in car accidents, workplace accidents and even due to "premises liability" incidents, in which a dangerous property condition on another person's property led to the injury. No matter the reason, though, significant injuries can change a person's life.

Seeking disability benefits for fibromyalgia

Like many who suffer from the symptoms of fibromyalgia, you have probably heard more than once that it is all in your head. In fact, your own doctor may have suggested this while writing you yet another prescription for pain medication or anxiety.

When others dismiss your symptoms, it can be discouraging. Fibromyalgia is a real disorder, but few people, including many in the medical community, understand it. Nevertheless, it can be debilitating. If your symptoms prevent you from working, you may wonder about your chances of qualifying for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration.

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