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Social Security Disability FAQ's

Applying for Social Security Disability benefits is a complicated process that can take years to complete. Understanding how to proceed is the first step in filing a disability claim. A qualified Social Security lawyer is your best asset in filing a successful disability claim.

These frequently asked questions are designed to serve as a beginning resource for those pursuing a disability claim. For more information, contact a disability lawyer in DC, Maryland, or Virginia.

What is disability?

According to the Social Security Administration, a disability is defined as any medical condition which prevents the afflicted individual from engaging in Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA), and which is expected to last at least 12 months or end in death.

What is the earnings requirement for Social Security Disability Insurance?

Social Security work credits are based on an individual's yearly salary or income. You may earn up to 4 credits per year. In 2011, earning $4,480 in a year would acquire a worker the maximum of 4 yearly credits. To qualify for SSD benefits, one generally must have accumulated 40 credits, at least 20 of which were earned in the past 10 years. In certain situations, younger workers may qualify with fewer credits.

How much are disability benefits payments?

Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are based on an individual's average lifetime earnings, and therefore vary with each individual disability claim. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a set amount, but may be supplemented by each state. The base SSI payment is $674 per month for an individual or $1011 per month for a couple. In Washington DC SSI payments are subsidized for individuals living in adult foster care or Medicaid facilities.

When should I apply for disability benefits?

Because the process of applying for disability benefits can be quite long, in some cases taking years before a claim is approved and benefits are issued, it is critical to apply for disability benefits as soon as you become disabled. If you are disabled and unable to work, and you have not yet applied for disability benefits, it is in your best interest to do so immediately. For help with your claim, contact an experienced Social Security disability attorney.

Do I need a Social Security attorney to file my disability claim?

It is permissible to pursue a disability claim without legal representation; however, it is ill-advised. SSA statistics show that a claimant's likelihood of a successful claim is increased with representation from a qualified disability lawyer. If your initial claim is rejected-and the most are-you will want a legal professional to handle your disability hearing and any appeals.

How much does a disability lawyer cost?

Social Security disability representatives receive attorney's fees only after a claim has been successfully approved. Disability attorney fees are equal to 25% of a benefits recipient's back pay, with a maximum fee of $6000. The Social Security Administration pays the disability lawyer's fee directly from the back payments to be issued, meaning the claimant does not directly pay attorney fees.

Applying for Social Security Disability benefits is a complicated process that can take years to complete. Understanding how to proceed is the first step in filing a disability claim. A qualified Social Security lawyer is your best asset in filing a successful disability claim.

These frequently asked questions are designed to serve as a beginning resource for those pursuing a disability claim. For more information, contact a disability lawyer in DC, Maryland, or Virginia.

What is disability?

According to the Social Security Administration, a disability is defined as any medical condition which prevents the afflicted individual from engaging in Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA), and which is expected to last at least 12 months or end in death.

What is the earnings requirement for Social Security Disability Insurance?

Social Security work credits are based on an individual's yearly salary or income. You may earn up to 4 credits per year. In 2011, earning $4,480 in a year would acquire a worker the maximum of 4 yearly credits. To qualify for SSD benefits, one generally must have accumulated 40 credits, at least 20 of which were earned in the past 10 years. In certain situations, younger workers may qualify with fewer credits.

How much are disability benefits payments?

Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are based on an individual's average lifetime earnings, and therefore vary with each individual disability claim. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a set amount, but may be supplemented by each state. The base SSI payment is $674 per month for an individual or $1011 per month for a couple. In Washington DC SSI payments are subsidized for individuals living in adult foster care or Medicaid facilities.

When should I apply for disability benefits?

Because the process of applying for disability benefits can be quite long, in some cases taking years before a claim is approved and benefits are issued, it is critical to apply for disability benefits as soon as you become disabled. If you are disabled and unable to work, and you have not yet applied for disability benefits, it is in your best interest to do so immediately. For help with your claim, contact an experienced Social Security disability attorney.

Do I need a Social Security attorney to file my disability claim?

It is permissible to pursue a disability claim without legal representation; however, it is ill-advised. SSA statistics show that a claimant's likelihood of a successful claim is increased with representation from a qualified disability lawyer. If your initial claim is rejected-and the most are-you will want a legal professional to handle your disability hearing and any appeals.

How much does a disability lawyer cost?

Social Security disability representatives receive attorney's fees only after a claim has been successfully approved. Disability attorney fees are equal to 25% of a benefits recipient's back pay, with a maximum fee of $6000. The Social Security Administration pays the disability lawyer's fee directly from the back payments to be issued, meaning the claimant does not directly pay attorney fees.

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