Smith, Mendenhall, Selby & Cole
Our firm concentrates in personal injury, workers' compensation, social security disability claims, and criminal defense.
Practice Areas | SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY
Our experienced lawyers assist disabled clients and their familes throughout the entire process of seeking Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. We understand that becoming disabled creates substantial difficulties for you and can make everyday tasks very burdensome. Our goal is to streamline the process and alleviate the pressures involved with obtaining disability benefits. We have the experience to understand your situation and resources to earn the benefits you need.
SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY (SSDI) vs. SUPPLEMENTAL SECURITY INCOME (SSI)
Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, is funded through a federal payroll tax. Eligible recipients for SSDI are those disabled people who have contributed to the Social Security trust fund (through the payroll tax automatically withdrawn from their paycheck). In addition, recipients must have previously worked for a certain number of years to earn enough "work credits", which is based on age and certain income requirements. SSDI coverage is only available to people under the age of 65.
On the other hand, Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, is an entirely different program and is available to those disabled individuals who have not worked long enough to earn the required number of "work credits" to be eligible for SSDI. Therefore, SSI serves as an alternative for individuals who not qualify for SSDI because they have either never worked or not worked long enough to be eligible. There are additional restrictions for eligibility, including income and asset limitations.
THE SSDI AND SSI CLAIMS PROCESS
The vast majority of Social Security Disability claims are initially denied by the Social Security Administration, the federal agency in charge of administering SSDI and SSI. To make a successful claim, you must demonstrate to the Administration that your impairment, due to either illness or accidental injury, prevents you from holding a job.
Because most claims are initially denied, it is wise to have legal representation beginning with your initial claim throughout the appeals process. Our law office has the experience to counsel you throughout the process and answer any questions you may have. The appeals procedure involves a number of steps including filing a Request for Reconsideration and presenting your case at a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. It is important to properly document your disability and collect all relevant medical information to present during your hearing.
Call our office to set up an appointment and discuss your situation with one of our experienced attorneys.
Hours: Mon - Fri 8:30am - 5pm
Phone: (618) 465-4656
Fax: (618) 465-5705