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Thousands of West Virginia residents who are unable to work due to a serious disability depend on Social Security benefits to supplement their income and make ends meet. However, getting approved for benefits by the Social Security Administration (SSA) can be a long and arduous process, especially without the insight and guidance of an experienced attorney.
If you want to maximize your chances of getting the benefits you need, consider working with a dedicated Charleston Social Security lawyer at Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law. By working with a knowledgeable team that is well-versed in Social Security law, you could have a much easier time navigating the SSA’s disability claims process and building a strong and comprehensive application.
The SSA oversees several programs designed to help people in need stay afloat financially, each of which serves a different purpose and supports individuals struggling with different problems. If someone becomes disabled prior to reaching full retirement age, they may file an application for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).
SSDI is available for individuals who can no longer hold gainful employment because of a disability and have paid FICA Social Security taxes for a sufficient number of years. To qualify for SSDI benefits, an applicant must suffer from an injury, illness, or physical condition that meets the SSA’s criteria for “disability” and have earned enough work credits prior to becoming disabled. The number of work credits someone needs to qualify for this type of Social Security benefit will depend on their age at the time of becoming disabled – the older someone is, the more credits they will need.
Alternatively, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients must not only be disabled or of full retirement age, but they also must meet household income requirements and not have more than $2,000 – or $3,000 for married applicants – in available assets. A lawyer at our firm can discuss prerequisites and filing processes for these Social Security programs in more detail during a private consultation.
Receiving a denial from the SSA does not always mean that an applicant doesn’t qualify for benefits. Every applicant who receives a denial has the right to file an appeal to have their application reviewed.
If submitting additional information or documentation to the SSA does not result in a reversal, the next step is requesting a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. If that still does not yield a favorable outcome, you may appeal to the Appeals Council, and finally a review by a federal court is the last step in the Social Security appeals process. Each appellate option has different requirements and allows for different means of contesting a previous denial, so representation from a knowledgeable Charleston Social Security attorney is crucial.
Support from the Social Security Administration can still serve as a crucial lifeline for individuals who qualify to receive it. However, even if you do have strong qualifications for benefits, proving your eligibility and actually acquiring the payments you deserve can be extraordinarily complex.
Seeking help from a Charleston Social Security lawyer could make a world of difference in your ability to obtain disability benefits. To find out more, call our firm today and schedule a consultation.
Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law