Disability benefits provide income support to individuals with disabilities and their families. To qualify, you must have worked in jobs covered by Social Security, and you must have a medical condition that meets the threshold of Social Security’s definition of disability. The benefits are usually paid monthly to people who cannot work for more than one year owing to a disability. Such benefits continue until you can resume work on a regular basis.
There are four stages of applying for disability benefits, as detailed below.
You need to complete an initial application which can be filed at your local Social Security Office. If your application is not approved, you may file a new claim or request for reconsideration, which is the second stage of application.
Request for reconsideration
Upon filing a request for reconsideration, your claim will be reviewed by Social Security, and if approved, you will start receiving disability benefits. If it is denied, you may file a new claim or request a hearing.
If your request for reconsideration is not successful, you may file a request for a hearing. It takes place at your local Office of Disability Adjudication and Review before an administrative law judge. You will receive a notice in ample time before the hearing date.
The decision from the hearing stage typically arrives within a few months. If it is approved, you will begin receiving the benefits. If your claim is denied, you can appeal the decision.
For a successful outcome in either of these stages, you need to be adequately prepared. Navigating through the process may seem like a daunting task. However, with the necessary legal knowledge of how the Social Security Administration operates, your application will stand a higher chance of going through.