If you have become disabled because of an accident, a disease, or an illness and the condition is expected to last at least one year or result in death, you may want to seriously consider applying for Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits.
Disability benefits are different than Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which is a program specifically for disabled individuals with a very low income. It is also different than workers’ compensation, a no-fault insurance program paid for by employers to compensate employees who are injured in workplace accidents, or who suffer from occupational diseases, such as Baker’s Lung or occupational hearing loss.
What is SSDI?
Social Security Disability benefits, or SSDI, are benefits paid by the Social Security Disability Insurance program. In order for someone to qualify for disability benefits, he or she must have worked long enough and paid into the program. And, they must meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) strict definition of a disability.
To be “disabled” according to the SSA, a medical condition must be so severe that the individual cannot engage in any meaningful work and the disability must be expected to last at least one year or result in death. While there are some programs out there that pay people for short-term disabilities, that is not the case with SSDI.
What Documents Do I Need?
If you apply for disability benefits, you’ll need to provide the following information:
- Your birth certificate and Social Security number,
- Your doctors’ contact information,
- The dates of your doctors’ visits,
- The names of all the prescriptions you are taking,
- Your medical records from the healthcare providers you’ve been seeing,
- Any laboratory or test results,
- A summary of what kind of work you did and where you were working,
- Your most recent W-2s. If you’re on a 1099, you’ll need your most recent tax returns from last year.
Related: SSDI: What is Substantial Gainful Activity?
If you are interested in applying for disability benefits, we invite you to contact our Plano Social Security Disability law firm. We can answer your questions and streamline the application process, so you have the best chances of approval.