Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

Social Security Disability Archives

4 Things to Know Before Applying for Social Security Disability

1. Compile all information regarding your medical treatment. Upon applying for Social Security disability, you will be asked what medical treatment you have been receiving and who are your medical providers. It is very important to know not only what doctors you are seeing including the doctor's full name, address, and phone number but also to know when it is that you started seeing the doctor and any important dates associated with your treatment.

"My Social Security" Account

Most people do not know that they can access many of Social Security's services online through a "my Social Security" account. After creating a "my Social Security" account, users can apply for retirement, disability, and Medicare benefits online, as well as check the status of an application or appeal, request a replacement Social Security card, print a benefit verification letter, and more. Social Security's website makes it easier for everyone to access their own information with Social Security without having to go to their local Social Security Office.

IS MY SOCIAL MEDIA BEING WATCHED??

In early 2019, the Social Security Administration was rumored to begin monitoring applicants' and beneficiaries' social media accounts as part of the process of evaluating disability. Many advocates for the disabled, including representatives, attorneys, organizations, and U.S. Senate, pushed back on this idea.

How Veterans and Social Security Disability qualifications differ

Many soldiers spend years serving their county only to come back a mere shell of themselves after fighting on the front lines. If you're a veteran that receives disability benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), then you probably assume that the Social Security Administration (SSA) would also classify you as disabled. This isn't necessarily the case though. Both federal agencies have distinct guidelines that you must meet to receive disability benefits.

Disabled people worried about proposed benefits changes

Many disabled people have been worried by recent indications that the Trump administration is considering reducing disability benefits, or making it harder for disabled people to apply for or keep their benefits.

New rule may mean more frequent reviews for disability recipients

Many of our readers in Alabama know just how hard it is to get approved for Social Security disability benefits. The application process can be arduous and can take quite a bit of time to get through, especially if an appeal is necessary. SSD benefits are a financial lifeline for those who are unable to work any longer due to a physical or mental disability.

Keep up the fight if an application for SSD benefits is denied

Many of our readers in Alabama may have heard what is probably considered to be the most negative aspect about Social Security disability benefits -- that initial applications for these benefits are oftentimes denied. For some people who are dealing with a disability, this might be enough to make them reconsider whether it is even worth trying to apply for SSD benefits at all. For those who have already seen their initial application denied, they may be downtrodden enough to feel like they should just give up the fight.

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.

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.

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.

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