Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a disability program that provides benefits to people who have worked and earned enough credits under the system to qualify for those benefits. In order to qualify, a person must be unable to perform substantial gainful activity due to a physical or mental impairment that is expected to, or has already, lasted for twelve months. At Harbison & Kavanagh, we understand the intricacies of the SSDI process and are here to explain five reasons why you should file for SSDI today.
You are Seriously Ill or Injured and Unable to Work for an Extended Period of Time
If you know or believe that your illness or injury will render you unable to work for an extended period of time, SSDI benefits could mean the difference between being able to pay for basics like rent and food and going without. SSDI benefits make up for the lost income caused by the inability to work and given the process you must go through in order to qualify for benefits the sooner you file the sooner you will start to receive benefits.
You Have an Illness Which is Expected to End in Death in Less Than Twelve Months
Qualifying for SSDI when you know you have an illness which is expected to end in death in less than twelve months can also provide protection for your family. If you become eligible, family members such as children under nineteen years old still in school or a spouse aged 62 years or older may receive separate SSDI benefits to compensate for the lack of income.
You are Unable to Work and Covered by Private Disability Insurance
If you are covered by private disability insurance and become unable to work, your private insurer may require you to apply for SSDI as a condition of receiving insurance benefits. If you qualify for SSDI, those benefits will offset the overall cost for the private insurer, meaning that the insurer needs to pay out less for your claims, but you would still be receiving the same overall amount in disability benefits every month.
You Are Completely Disabled and Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Applying for SSDI after a workplace accident that has left you disabled can serve as a safety net for you and your family. If circumstances change with your workers’ compensation benefits, SSDI benefits will be there to help cover the difference. In addition, if you decide to take a workers’ compensation settlement in one lump sum, SSDI can provide monthly benefits that may help in budgeting and handling expenses while the lump sum settlement is being handled.
You Protect Your Retirement Benefits
Qualifying for SSDI also protects your retirement benefits for the future. Social Security looks at the total amount of credits earned over the course of your professional career by awarding credits for every year of work, which is then averaged at the time of your retirement to determine your overall retirement benefits. If you become disabled and unable to work, but Social Security does not know, those years are tallied as zeros and your overall retirement benefits will decrease significantly. When you receive SSDI, those years are not included in the overall calculation of your retirement benefits, and there is no reduction in benefits.
File for SSDI with Our Help Today
If you believe you qualify for SSDI but have questions regarding the application, process, or appeal in the Richmond area our lawyers are here to help. Contact Harbison & Kavanagh today at (804) 888-8000 to schedule a free consultation of your case.