Frequently Asked Questions About Social Security Disability

Social Security Disability FAQsAnswers to frequently asked questions about Social Security Disability benefit applications, claims, appeals and related income taxes.

Q: What is Social Security Disability Insurance?

A: Employees, their employers and those who are self-employed pay for Social Security Disability insurance as part of their payroll Social Security taxes. Based on work history, workers qualify for disability benefits. The amount you receive in benefits is calculated based on your earnings.

Q: What is Supplemental Security Income?

A: SSI benefits are intended to help you with your basic needs for food, clothing and shelter. You may be eligible for SSI even after you are no longer eligible for SSDI benefits. To be eligible for SSI you must meet Social Security’s definition of disability and have limited income and resources.

Q: According to the Social Security Administration, what is a disability?

A: The Social Security Administration (SSA) defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that is severe enough to prevent you from working and earning above a set amount per month for 12 months or results in death.

Q: How do I apply for Social Security Disability?

A: You may use one of three methods to file an application for Social Security Disability (SSD):

  • Internet – file online at either on your own or with our assistance.
  • Call your local Social Security office to arrange an appointment to apply.
  • Walk into a Social Security office without an appointment to apply.

Q: When am I eligible to apply for Social Security Disability?

A: There is no waiting period before you file for disability. You are eligible to file an application for SSD the day after you stop working. If you are still working and considering filing for disability, it is best to contact an attorney to discuss how to proceed.

Q: Will I need a doctor to verify my disability?

A: Yes. Your doctor must provide evidence to support your claim that you are disabled. Clinical findings, imaging studies, and laboratory reports must support your doctor’s opinion.

Q: What should I do if my application is denied?

A: A majority of claims are denied early on by Social Security. You will generally be given 60 days to appeal a denial from Social Security. Contact the law offices of Bailey & Galyen for help with an appeal.

Q: If I am notified that I will receive SSD benefits, when will I receive my money?

A: Social Security Disability benefits will not begin until after a five full calendar months (“waiting period”) from the onset of the disability. Your first check will include your past-due benefits less any attorney fees and then you will begin to receive monthly checks for as long as your disability continues.

Q: Do I need a lawyer to get the Social Security Disability benefits?

A: Although a lawyer is not necessary to file a Social Security Disability application, we suggest you contact an attorney before your initial application is filed. People who hire an attorney are more successful on appeal than those unrepresented.

When an appeal for Social Security Disability claim is denied, there is a very high likelihood the case will reach the hearing before an administrative law judge before it will be approved. When you have a hearing before an administrative or an appeals council, a lawyer is highly desirable to achieve the best results.

Q: How much will the attorney cost me?

A: Social Security Attorney’s work under a contingent fee agreement. This means that unless you are awarded benefits, you do not owe the attorney money.

Contact An Experienced Social Security Disability Lawyer Today

For your convenience, we answer our phones 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Evening and weekend meetings can be arranged upon request. To set up a free initial consultation, call us at (855) 866-6484 or contact us online. Se habla Español