If you suffered a stroke in Akron, OH, and cannot work due to your condition, you may qualify for monthly Social Security Disability (SSD) payments. However, getting the benefits you deserve can be a complex process, especially while coping with the symptoms of your illness.
An Akron stroke lawyer with Berger and Green can put our firm’s 40-plus years of Social Security experience behind your disability claim. We can help you avoid common SSD application errors that lead to denial and assist you with appealing unfavorable decisions.
SSD Can Provide Needed Resources If Your Stroke Caused a Disability
If you suffered from a stroke, you may have severe and permanent physical and cognitive side effects that interfere with your life and ability to work. In addition, your injury may leave you wondering how you will provide for yourself or your family.
Fortunately, Social Security Disability benefits can provide you with monetary resources to assist with housing, food, health care, and other living expenses. The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers two separate programs that provide aid to disabled workers:
- Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). SSDI provides benefits to workers who have earned work credits through employment contributions. Workers usually must have at least 20 credits (or at least five years of work) to be eligible, though younger workers may need fewer credits.
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This program assists individuals with limited income and resources. It is needs-based, and applicants do not need work credits.
Some workers qualify for SSDI and SSI, though each has its own application. Our Ohio SSD lawyers can tell you more about your eligibility and ensure you file the appropriate claims.
For a free legal consultation with a Stroke lawyer serving Akron, call 412-661-1400
Does Your Stroke Injury Qualify You for SSD Payments?
The SSA lists medical conditions it considers disabling in the Blue Book, which includes stroke under neurological disorders. However, not all stroke injuries qualify as disabling. When reviewing your claim, the SSA will ask the following:
Does Your Condition Prevent You from Working?
Your stroke injury must prevent you from doing basic work-related activity (e.g., standing, sitting, walking, remembering) for at least 12 months. The SSA decides you cannot work if you are unable to earn at or above its substantial gainful activity limit. According to the SSA, the SGA for 2023 is an average of $1,470 per month.
You can and should apply for SSD immediately if your stroke injuries interfere with your ability to make a living.
Are Your Stroke Symptoms Severe?
The SSA does not consider all stroke injuries disabling. Your stroke must result in:
- Inability to speak, write, or communicate effectively due to sensory or motor aphasia
- Inability to control movement in at least two limbs
- Problems understanding, applying, and remembering information
- Difficulty concentrating or finishing tasks
- Inability to regulate emotions or control behavior
- Vision impairment
You can still seek benefits if the side effects of your stroke do not meet the above requirements, but you must supply medical evidence proving your symptoms are as severe as those listed.
Akron Stroke Lawyer Near Me 412-661-1400
Benefit Amounts for a Stroke Injury
The amount of your SSDI payments depends on your work credits. The more earned work credits you have, the higher your benefits will be. In 2023, monthly payments range anywhere from around $100 to $3,000 monthly, with an average payment of $1,483.
SSI payments change annually based on the Consumer Price Index and other economic indicators. The federal rate for SSI in 2023 is $914 per individual per month. Some states, including Ohio, provide an additional SSI supplement.
Keep in mind that other sources of income can affect your SSD payments and eligibility, including:
- Veterans’ benefits
- Unemployment assistance
- Workers’ compensation benefits
- Retirement, pension, and other employment benefits
Our Akron Stroke Lawyers Can Appeal Denied SSD Applications
If the SSA denied your claim, you are not alone. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, this is the fate of more than 60 percent of initial applications. Common reasons for denial include clerical errors, lack of medical evidence, and failure to prove you meet disability or income requirements.
Our Akron SSD attorneys can assist you with an appeal. You have 60 days from receipt of notice of your denial to begin the process. You then have 60 days between each stage to progress your claim if you are unhappy with the determination. The four stages of appeal include:
- Reconsideration. If you believe your denial was in error, our attorneys can request that the SSA review your application. It is rare for a decision to get reversed at this stage.
- Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) hearing. We can represent you during a hearing and present new evidence to support your claim. This is an official legal proceeding in which the Judge will ask questions, consult witnesses, and make an official determination.
- Review of ALJ Hearing. If you disagree with the ALJ’s ruling, we can ask the Appeals Council to reevaluate the decision.
- Federal court action. Our lawyers can take your case before a U.S. District Court.
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Why Choose an SSD Lawyer with Berger and Green?
Our firm can relieve some of your stress during an already challenging time by filing your initial SSD application and ensuring the SSA has the information it needs regarding your medical providers. We can also handle your appeal if the SSA denies your claim. We will fight for your payments while you focus on healing. We offer free consultations and take SSD cases on contingency.
Contact Us Today About an SSD Disability Claim in Akron, Ohio
Contact Berger and Green, and let us put our SSD knowledge to work for you. Our Akron stroke lawyers can stand up for you, protect your rights, and fight for the benefits you need to support yourself or your loved ones. We offer risk-free, no-obligation consultations. Connect with a lawyer near you today.