Suffering from a medical condition that impairs your ability to work can be difficult to deal with, especially when your inability to work results in financial struggles as well. Fortunately, help may be available through the Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, program. The SSDI program provides monthly monetary benefits for those who qualify. All medical conditions, however, are not alike when it comes to applying for SSDI. Some conditions qualify you automatically, and others may take months to years to be approved as a limiting disability. An experienced SSDI attorney is your greatest asset in both situations.
Generally, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has a listing of disabilities that automatically qualify you for benefits. This allows you to bypass the hassle of appeals and delayed benefits. This list can be found in the Blue Book on the SSA website. If your condition is not on the list, the Determining Disability Services agent at your local office may use the “grid”, a table of conditions cross-referenced by age and work ability, to qualify you. If you feel your situation applies to any of the following, you may have grounds for automatic qualification.
- You have a terminal illnesses like end stage cancer, or AIDS, or another illness that will result in death.
- You qualify for a “compassionate allowance”, which is a list of about 220 conditions that are serious enough to warrant a quick approval with little medical evidence.
- You have a Presumptive Disability (PD); which is a list of 15 obvious and life long conditions that automatically qualify; including ALS, Down’s Syndrome, HIV, blindness and deafness.
- You are a threat to yourself (suicidal) or to the public (homicidal). Many mental illnesses fall into this category, and so should be inquired about carefully.
Additionally, certain circumstances, not necessarily medical conditions, can also be automatic qualifiers, including, but not limited to
- You served in the military on or after October 1, 2001, although the disability does not need to be related to military service.
- You are in dire need of assistance as a result of your condition. For example, you are at risk of losing, or have lost, food, shelter, or medical treatment because of your condition and you can show evidence of your needs. Some examples of evidence may include unpaid bills (regular or medical), bank statements, eviction notices, foreclosure notice, utility shut offs, expiration of medical coverage, and other hardships.
While there is no guarantee that you will be eligible for an automatic qualification, these examples can act as a guide if you plan to apply for SSDI. Because the SSDI application process can be confusing, and the denial rate is high (70 percent of initial applications are denied) it is in your best interest to consult with the experienced Michigan Social Security benefits attorneys at Slusky and Walt, the American Benefit Experts before applying. The team may be reached by calling 1-800-ABE-HELPS (1-800-223-4357) today to schedule your free consultation.