Deciding Between Early Retirement or Disability Benefits

It typically gets easier for individuals to prevail on disability benefits claims as they get older, especially when they are over the age of sixty. This is based in part on the general premise that the Social Security Administration (SSA) will consider that it may be more difficult for older workers to enter new workplaces. Even so, some elderly individuals opt to pull their retirement benefits early rather than try to apply for disability benefits for several reasons. The process to apply for disability benefits may scare some people, while others may be concerned that receiving disability benefits would reduce the amount of benefits they are entitled to receive. An experienced disability attorney can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages to applying for disability benefits. Continue reading

Establishing Proof for Social Security Disability Benefits

One of the necessary prerequisites to building a successful claim for Social Security disability benefits is establishing that you in fact have a medical disability. Specifically, any person who files a disability claim must produce “acceptable medical evidence” that supports that establishes proof of a disability and indicates the severity of that disability. Typically, the proof to support social security disability benefits claims is supported by documentation issued by a licensed medical provider that has previously treated the claimant specifically for their disability. However, with that broad idea in mind, claimants often have difficulty figuring out what evidence they will need to support their claim. Continue reading

Updates to Disability Claims for Respiratory Disorders

Many individuals who apply for disability benefits suffer from a type of respiratory disorder. Common respiratory disorders include COPD, Cystic Fibrosis, Sleep Apnea, Pneumoconiosis, Asthma, Pulmonary Hypertension, and Respiratory Failure. When evaluating a disability benefits claim, the Social Security Administration (SSA) uses their promulgated regulations to determine whether that particular claimant should be entitled to receive benefits. In June 2016, the SSA updated their regulations regarding respiratory disorders by publishing their Revised Medical Criteria for Evaluating Respiratory Disorders. This update provides further detail as to how the SSA will evaluate disability benefits claims for individuals with respiratory disorders. The revised rules became effective on October 7, 2016 and will be used by the SSA in evaluating respiratory disorder benefits claims moving forward. Continue reading

Prerelease Agreements for SSDI Benefits

Imagine you are currently incarcerated with a disability. You just learned of your release date but you realize that once you are released, you will have no means of supporting yourself unless you start receiving some form of disability benefits. Is it possible to apply for these benefits before you are released? The answer is likely yes.

For individuals who are about to leave a hospital or nursing home that is more than 50% funded by Medicaid or Medicare or individuals who are about to leave jail or prison, you have the possibility of applying for SSDI benefits prior to your release if the institution has a prerelease agreement with the SSA. The prerelease procedure allows individuals in either of these institutions to apply for benefits a few months prior to their release so they can get a determination of what benefits they may be entitled to once they leave. Continue reading

Social Security Benefits for Felons

If you are applying to receive or are already receiving disability benefits and are convicted of a felony, one of your primary concerns is likely the impact of your conviction on your eligibility to receive SSDI benefits. While generally, a conviction itself will not affect your eligibility to receive benefits, if you are facing incarceration, this may suspend your benefits. In this article, we’ll discuss eligibility for social security benefits for felons. Continue reading

Dependent & Spouse Social Security Disability Benefits

If you begin suffering from a disability that causes you to lose your employment, the first question you often ask yourself is whether you could receive any benefits. If you can, the question then becomes if any of your other family members could potentially qualify for as well. Depending on a family member’s age and relationship to you, they may also be able to receive benefits. In this article, we’ll discuss dependent and spouse social security disability benefits eligibility as well as potential benefits for other family members.  Continue reading

The Process & Frequency of a Continuing Disability Review

Imagine you have gotten over the first hurdle and have received notification from the Social Security Administration (SSA) that after months of trying to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, the SSA has approved your application. Now that you can start receiving benefits, you want to know what you will need to anticipate as far as keeping them. The SSA engages in a practice called a continuing disability review to determine whether a beneficiary is eligible to continue receiving disability benefits. Specifically, if the SSA finds the medical condition that qualified you to receive disability benefits has sufficiently improved, it will terminate your benefits. Continue reading

Termination of Social Security Disability Benefits

In 2015, over 775,000 people received awards of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits from the Social Security Administration. Once someone begins receiving SSDI benefits, a key concern they face is whether these benefits could later be terminated. If you start receiving SSDI benefits, it is important to understand potential factors that may terminate your benefits. Continue reading

Veterans Financial Assistance: Emergency Medical Expenses

Over the past several years, many veterans faced the same problem: their veterans financial assistance claims for reimbursement of emergency medical expenses from the VA were denied because a portion of the expenses were covered by Medicare. In the recent decision of Richard W. Staab v. Robert A. McDonald, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims ruled in favor of a veteran who faced such a situation. Continue reading