Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

Social Security Disability Archives

Adult Children With Disabilities

Adults with disabilities who have never worked may be eligible to receive Supplemental Security Income, as long as he or she meets the income requirements for SSI.  They cannot have more than $2,000 in personal property or income (or $3,000 if married) and any monthly household income must be below a certain threshold. 

Substitution of Parties

Given the lengthy process of applying and receiving Social Security benefits and the severity of many Claimants' illnesses, it is sadly not uncommon for a Social Security disability Claimant to die during the pendency of the process. However, if a Social Security disability applicant dies before being approved for benefits, it may be possible for a family member of the Claimant to receive any benefits owed to the deceased Claimant. The rules concerning substitution of parties in the case of a deceased Claimant depend on the type of disability claim filed.

CHANGES MAY BE ON THE HORIZON FOR RESIDENTS OF PUERTO RICO

Presently, residents of Puerto Rico are only able to draw under the Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) or Title II program for Social Security, and are not able to draw under the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program. This is due to the fact the Social Security Act excludes Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory, from the SSI benefits program. However, these rules may be changing soon which would greatly help disabled residents of Puerto Rico who have been unable to work. Similarly, most children's claims for disability fall under the SSI program. This would vastly expand the number of Puerto Rican children who are allowed to receive disability benefits.

Biestek v. Berryhill

The United States Supreme Court has affirmed the 6th Circuit's decision in the case of Biestek v. Berryhill. In a 6 to 3 decision, the United States Supreme Court found that "a vocational expert's refusal to provide private market-survey data upon the applicant's request does not categorically preclude the testimony from counting as 'substantial evidence.'" Justice Elena Kagan wrote the majority opinion. The Supreme Court in its decision refused to adopt a categorical rule as had been done in the 7th Circuit. The Supreme Court further explained that there must be a case-by-case basis when determining whether the vocational expert's testimony can qualify as substantial evidence. In applying a case-by-case basis, the vocational expert's testimony as well as the rest of the administrative record must be taken into account. The Court stated that in some cases, the refusal to disclose data taken into consideration with other short comings would prevent the court from finding that 'a reasonable mind' could accept the expert's testimony. However, in this specific case, the refusal of a vocational expert to provide private market-survey data did not preclude the Administrative Law Judge from accepting the vocational expert's testimony as substantial evidence.

AVOIDING PITFALLS BEFORE A HEARING

I want to discuss some things people need to know before they get a Social Security hearing. I have worked in Social Security law for almost 19 years now and I can tell you there is a lot of information that is needed before having a hearing date and here are some things to remember.  

Can a noncitizen obtain a Social Security number?

Alabama, and the rest of the United States, is home to immigrants from all over the world who come here to make a decent living. As time passes, many of these people may face financial challenges owing to a number of reasons. In due course, they may require financial support in the form of Social Security Retirement income, Social Security Disability income or Supplemental Security income.

HOW DOES MY WORK IN THE PAST AFFECT MY DISABILITY CASE?

If you have filed or intend to file for disability then know that the work you have done can affect your disability care. When someone files for disability with Social Security, they are alleging that they are unable to work. The basis to Social Security disability is not just based on if you can do work you have done before, but also to consider if there is other work you can do.

New and Material Evidence at the Appeals Council

After receiving an Unfavorable Decision from an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), a Claimant who disagrees with the decision of the ALJ may appeal the decision to the Appeals Council of the Social Security Administration within 60 days. The Appeals Council will evaluate a decision of an ALJ for any abuse of discretion by the ALJ, error of law, if the issue affects the general public interest, or if the ALJ's actions, findings, and conclusions were not supported by substantial evidence.

How other disability benefits can affect SSD benefits

There are many people here in the Mobile area who receive Social Security Disability benefits for a disabling injury or illness. Many of these people also receive financial benefits from other sources such as the state's workers' compensation program and other state-funded benefits or from private sources such as personal insurance or private pension schemes.

Email Us For A Response

Tell Us About Your Case

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Firm Contact Information:

1015 Montlimar Drive, Suite B4
Mobile, AL 36609

Map & Directions

Phone: 251-243-7872
Toll Free: 877-539-1739
Fax: 251-342-3747

Mississippi: 228-435-4000
Florida: 850-458-1226