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December 2016 Archives

How Spousal Income Can Affect Disability Benefits

One issue that often confuses clients is that the program known as "disability" is really made up two different programs: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Right to Counsel

With the impending change of administrations, many are speculating on potential modifications to federal programs, such as Social Security. Some persons in the Social Security Administration have even questioned why an attorney is necessary at a hearing. Isn't the informal process non-adversarial? Can we reduce judicial reversals and procedural errors without interference from counsel? While any attempts to improve efficiencies are laudable, the right to counsel should not be easily dismissed.

Claimant's Responsibilities

Anyone who has paid enough taxes under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) has a right to file a claim for Social Security Disability benefits under Title II of the Social Security Act. Even without coverage under Title II, an individual who is disabled may also file a claim for Supplemental Security Income benefits under Title XVI, provided they meet the poverty guidelines. Yet, the right to benefits comes with responsibilities. The duty of filing the initial application, for example, is on the claimant. Many claimants do not file their claim on time, potentially costing them a loss of back pay.

Workers' compensation versus disability: The differences

If you've been hurt, you need to understand the different kinds of benefits available to you. One of those benefits is workers' compensation, while another includes state-paid disability benefits. You may be entitled to one or both of these benefits, depending on your situation.

Mental disorders can qualify you for disability benefits

Organic mental disorders are behavioral or psychological abnormalities that are associated with the dysfunction of the brain. They are not necessarily caused by genetic predispositions or mutations and can be a result of trauma or injury.

What kinds of benefits are there for those with disabilities?

Social Security Disability benefits are a lifeline to those who can no longer work due to a serious illness or disability. If you have a medical condition that has made it impossible to work a full-time job, then this benefit may be for you. There are several eligibility requirements to consider, and the application process can be tricky. Many who move forward with an application choose to do so with legal advice, since there are many forms and documents that have to be provided to the Social Security Administration.

Why Does it Take so Long to get a Hearing?

As you likely know, applying for social security disability can take a long time. The wait to get a hearing from the time of application to the hearing can be over two years. It takes this long for several reasons but one of them is the lack of funding to operate the program.

Communicating with Your Doctor

If you are applying for disability, it is important that you attend doctor's appointments and get treated for the impairments that you allege are preventing you from being able to work. It is important that there are records to show to Social Security that you have those illnesses or injuries and that you are doing what your doctor asks of you.

Incarceration and Disability

I recently met a correctional physician, who had a tattoo of the Eighth Amendment on his arm. Why? Because the incarcerated are the only population guaranteed access to healthcare under the Constitution. The tattoo serves as a daily reminder of the difficulties facing the people he serves. The doctor described typical physical and mental impairments seen at the correctional facility, and the situational hardships surmounting his patients. He also observed that some inmates became incarcerated for the sole purpose of receiving medical attention.

2017 Changes to SSDI and SSI

The new year is right around the corner, and with it comes several changes to the law when it comes to qualifying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Tax benefits can help military members who suffered disabilities

As someone who has gone to war or served in the armed forces, you deserve respect and the benefits owed to you by the U.S. government. Benefits can vary based on the state you live in as well, which is good news for people in Minnesota.


Midwest Disability, P.A.
408 Northdale Boulevard Northwest
Coon Rapids, MN 55448
Toll Free: 888-351-0427
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