Top 10 Myths When Applying for SSD
There are plenty of misconceptions that often discourage people from applying for social security disability benefits. We can help you assert your rights and improve the chances of your claim. First, you must be aware of these top 10 myths surrounding SSD.
1.) You cannot apply for disability if you have been jobless for less than a year.
If you are unable to work full time due to a physical or mental impairment, you should apply for SSD benefits as soon as possible. It could take several months or even a year before you appear before a judge, so it’s best that you start the process early. Do note that you have to be disabled for a minimum of 12 months to be able to claim SSD benefits. If your condition is terminal, the one-year requirement might be waived.
2.) Most applicants get denied twice before getting approved.
Back in the day, SSD applicants were often denied twice – after the initial application and then after appeal – before going to court. Michigan is one of 10 states that have eliminated the second step. If you receive a denial letter, call an attorney and file an appeal right away. Do not wait to be denied two or three times before consulting with an expert.
3.) Your perfectly healthy coworker is receiving disability benefits.
Many SSD recipients are suffering from severe medical conditions that are not visible or worth sharing with strangers. Focus on your case instead of scrutinizing other people’s affairs.
4.) Alcohol and substance abusers receive disability.
Social Security no longer recognizes addiction as a disability. Alcohol and illegal drug abuse can severely reduce your chances of receiving benefits. Even if you’re able to con the system, benefits will automatically be terminated when a case review reveals substance abuse.
5.) Immigrants receive disability.
The Social Security Administration has stringent requirements on citizenship and residency to make sure only qualified claimants receive SSD benefits.
6.) You have to be terminal to receive disability.
Most SSD recipients are nowhere near death or incapacitated. What makes them qualify for benefits are severe medical conditions that last more than a year – making it impossible to work full-time.
7.) Failing to find a job qualifies you for SSD benefits.
Do not tell a judge that you are claiming for SSD benefits only because you cannot find a job. SSD is for people who are actually disabled and unable to work.
8.) Failing a physical qualifies you for SSD benefits.
If you failed a physical that was required for a job application, it would have no bearing on your disability case. It might even backfire and give the judge the impression that you can actually work.
9.) SSD recipients are allowed to work while receiving benefits.
You are allowed to work while on disability, but there are strict limitations on the amount you can earn. People who go back to work – even part-time – could end up paying back thousands of dollars in overpaid benefits. Know the limits of additional income to remain eligible for disability benefits.
10.) I do not need an attorney if I am really disabled.
The disability may be easy to prove if only it is based on what is physically visible. But even in cases where the impairment is obvious, documents can muck up your entire case. Doctor notes are almost impossible to read. Doctors are also notorious for not responding quickly to requests for copies of patient records.
Disability cases require proper documentation and objective testing – two things that may not always be available from your physician. Judges often base their decision on forms completed by the doctor – at the request of an attorney. An experienced disability lawyer can also spot medical language that might hurt your case, which is why hiring an attorney is essential even if you’re really disabled.
The Clark Office is Here to Help
Michigan lawyers who have years of experience in SSD cases are able to help improve your chances of receiving disability benefits. The expert SSD attorneys at the Clark Law Office are among the best when it comes to guiding people through the process of applying for disability. Call us today for a free consultation at (517) 347-6900 if you are having trouble receiving your social security disability attorneys. We charge no fees unless you win your case!