Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

August 2019 Archives

Qualifying for Social Security Disability benefits for illnesses

Most of our readers in Alabama know that Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are available to people who are no longer able to work due to some type of debilitating injury or illness that has occurred in their lives. However, many people do not know the full extent of the qualifying conditions list. When it comes to serious illnesses that could lead to a person's application being approved to receive SSD benefits, the list is long. In general, the illness must be expected to last at least 12 months, or lead to the applicant's death.

SNAP -that was easy!

One of the biggest struggles for those filing for disability and without income is how do I feed myself and my family and how do I pay my bills. There is help for food services if you meet the income requirements. The food stamp program is now called SNAP which stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. SNAP's purpose is to help with nutrition by providing monthly benefits to eligible low income households with the means to buy the food they need for good health.

Veterans could see cost savings if new bill becomes law

Veterans in Alabama and throughout the country can face many different issues as they transition from active duty in the service to civilian life, particularly if they have health issues or disabilities from their time in the military. Fortunately, our government helps veterans in many respects, and it appears that newly introduced legislation aims to provide further support to those who have served in the military.

Eligibility for Supplemental Security Income

Most Americans are familiar with Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits and how an individual might apply for and qualify to receive those benefits. However, there is another form of financial benefit that some people may be eligible for: Supplemental Security Income.

Consultative Examinations

Our office has been advised that due to low funds, no consultative examinations will be scheduled by the Disability Determination Services of Alabama through September 15, 2019 through September 30, 2019. A consultative examination (CE) is an examination by a physician that is ordered by Social Security for Claimants to help decide whether they meet the criteria for Social Security disability. CEs are usually ordered by either the Disability Determination Services or an Administrative Law Judge at the hearing level when the Claimant's own medical sources are inadequate to determine if the Claimant is disabled. A CE is not conducted in order to provide the Claimant with medical advice or treatment. Rather, it is an examination that is supposed to assess the severity of a Claimant's medical impairments as well as any limitations that are a result of these impairments. The examination can either be a physical examination or psychological examination. It can also be blood work, x-rays, or a nerve conduction study.

Do I need an attorney to file for disability?

There are certain events for which you might contact an attorney for advice or assistance. A divorce, a lawsuit or an accusation of committing a crime are times when you generally have an attorney by your side. You may not think of seeking legal advice when you apply for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.

The information sought in Childhood Disability Interviews

As readers in Mobile, Alabama, and the rest of the country know, children with disabilities are entitled to Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. In order to determine the eligibility, the Social Security Administration (SSA) conducts Childhood Disability Interview and generates a Child Disability Report. This method is applicable to those children for whom the Child Disability Report is not created online.

Function Reports for Social Security Disability

When you apply for Social Security disability, one of the first things you receive in the mail from the Social Security Administration (SSA) is a function report. A function report will ask you various questions regarding your activities of daily living. For example, what do you do from the time that you wake up until you go to bed? Other questions ask how your medical impairments affect your ability to dress and bathe yourself, prepare your own meals, perform household chores, shop, travel, and perform any other activities of daily living.

Appeal process for VA decisions made before Feb. 19, 2019

Last week, a post on this blog discussed how an applicant can appeal a disability decision made by the Department of Veterans' affairs on or after February 19, 2019. The earlier appeal process will continue for decisions made before February 19, 2019. As there may be many people in Alabama, and elsewhere, who had their claims disallowed before February 19, 2019, it will be prudent to discuss the old appeal process as well since those applicants have one year to file an appeal against their decision.

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