Disability: Should You Apply?

If you've been thinking of applying for disability, you aren't alone. Approximately 20% of Americans suffer from a disability. If you're in pain, here's what you need to know.

If you've been injured and are unable to work, you may find that you are struggling to get by financially. Fortunately, filing for disability can help. Disabilities are not rare in the United States. In fact, half of all elderly Americans report living with a disability. Not only are physical disabilities physically exhausting and painful, they may be financially draining, as well. If you have been suffering from a physical condition or illness, you are not alone, and you may be eligible to receive disability benefits.

When to Apply

It's important to file for disability as soon as possible. It may take some time to process your application and you may have to wait a month or two for your first disability check once your request has been approved. Don't wait until it's too late to file. Instead, reach out as soon as you realize you may need disability payments to help you get by. There are several options available for starting the process. You may apply for disability in person, over the phone, or even online. You'll be asked to provide personal information, including your social security number and work history, in order to apply. Note that you will also need to have evidence of your disability or illness, which means you may need to provide medical records, including lab results.

When you should use benefits

Some adults may worry that their illness or physical problem is not "bad enough" to claim benefits. Understand that even if you are working, but you make less than $1,220 per month, you may be able to qualify, according to the Social Security Administration. You should consider applying for benefits if you are struggling to make ends meet due to your illness, your medical bills are unmanageable, or you are not able to work as much as you need to due to your illness.

What you need to know about claiming benefits

While there are many types of disabilities, understand that some physical problems automatically qualify for approval when claiming disability. For example, heart failure, vision loss, hearing loss, epilepsy, and dermatitis are all serious illnesses that qualify. Depending on the severity of your illness, as well as the length of your impairment, you may be able to claim benefits even if your illness is not listed as something that automatically qualifies you. Additionally, you need to have worked recently in order to claim benefits. When you apply, you'll need to provide your most recent job information.

If your request for disability has been denied or you have questions about starting the process for filing, a disability lawyer can help you. Schedule a consultation today to talk about your options for moving forward.