Becoming disabled after spending your life working can be disheartening. The bills keep piling up, you have additional medical expenses, and you cannot work at your previous capacity. Social Security Disability (SSD) programs ensure American workers have something to fall back on. The application process can take weeks, months, and sometimes years, so applying for benefits as soon as possible is best.
In addition to covering essential retirement benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) oversees the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Social Security Income (SSI) programs. If you cannot work, a Social Security disability attorney from Berger and Green in Armstrong County, PA, can help you sort out the details. Our team at Berger and Green can help you with every step of your claim for benefits. We can file your application, appeal a denial, and represent you before an Administrative Law Judge.
Does a Social Security Disability Lawyer Help?
Having a lawyer does offer some advantages. Your attorney can ensure that your application is completed accurately and that you do not miss any deadlines. The waiting can be difficult, and having a lawyer ensures that they will check on your claim status and keep you advised about progress. Our Social Security disability team will be there every step of the way. They will answer your questions, provide advice, and assist with the process to keep your claim on track. Your attorney will represent you before an Administrative Law Judge and present evidence that supports your claim for disability benefits.
For a free legal consultation with a social security disability lawyer serving Armstrong County, call 412-661-1400
Benefits of a Social Security Disability Attorney in Armstrong County, PA
Our Armstrong County Social Security disability team knows the process. They are compassionate and understand the importance of SSDI and SSI benefits for your family. Following a complimentary case evaluation, they can assist by:
- Evaluating your eligibility for benefits
- Completing your application for benefits
- Ensuring that you do not miss an important deadline
- Help you obtain proof of your disability from medical facilities
- Work with the local SSA office to submit your claim
- File the necessary documents to request an appeal if denied
- Manage your claim through the appeals process if denied
- Represent you at your hearing before an Administrative Law Judge
Having a lawyer doesn’t speed up the process, but you will have peace of mind knowing that you are not navigating the process alone. Our disability team stays up-to-date on changing policies and adjusts to meet new requirements as needed.
Armstrong County Social Security Disability Lawyer Near Me 412-661-1400
Understanding the Difference Between SSI and SSDI
The SSA administers two disability programs – SSDI and SSI. Both programs are in place to provide you with income in the case of an inability to continue working. In most cases, you will qualify under one of the programs to receive some compensation. You might be eligible under both programs if you have earned low wages consistently.
SSDI is for people who have worked and paid taxes. This insurance program will provide payments if you are injured or become disabled and unable to continue working before retirement age. SSDI converts automatically to regular Social Security benefits once you reach retirement age.
SSI is needs-based and provides income to assist with making ends meet. This fallback program is for people who earned at a lower rate or did not work consistently through adult life to earn the points necessary to qualify for SSDI. SSI can be awarded to those with few assets, little or no other income source, and a qualifying impairment.
If you qualify under both programs, an Armstrong County Social Security disability attorney can help you navigate the paperwork to complete each application.
Berger and Green Have a Track Record of Success
With more than 40 years of experience, Berger and Green has a reliable record of assisting clients with the Social Security claims and appeals process. Our disability team will help through every part of the claims and appeals process. We will provide counsel for your application and can help you appeal if denied.
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Handling the Cost of a Social Security Disability Lawyer in Armstong County, PA
When Berger and Green represent you, we accept no upfront fees. Our disability team will advise and assist you through your claim. From your initial consultation to a final resolution, our services cost you nothing unless we win for you.
We offer risk-free service because we understand how overwhelming it can be to file for disability and await a response. We offer our commitment to fight for the benefits you deserve. We get paid when you get paid.
How Much Can You Expect in SSDI/SSI Benefits?
SSDI and SSI have maximum payout limits. SSDI is based on how much you earned before your disability and your work credits. The maximum payment for 2022 is $3,345 per month. The amount you receive under SSDI equals the retirement benefits you will receive when you reach retirement age.
SSI is significantly lower, with a maximum benefit of $841 per month for an individual and $1,261 per month for a couple residing in their own residence.
SSI rates are adjusted for inflation. Recipients may also be able to collect state disbursements to supplement SSI. You can apply for Medicaid and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP) benefits. You may qualify for other assistance programs as well.
Meeting the Eligibility Requirements
As we stated earlier, SSDI requires a work history while SSI does not. Both require a disability that keeps you from working for a minimum of 12 months. The SSA provides guidelines for covered impairments in their Blue Book.
Suppose you have a disability not listed within the Blue Book. In that case, you may still qualify for disability based on your Residual Functional Capacity (RFC). This is an evaluation of your abilities based on information from several sources, including:
- Medical records and evidence from diagnostic testing
- Your doctors’ statements and assessment of your abilities
- An independent evaluation by a doctor paid for by the SSA
SSI in Pennsylvania places limits your income and assets. Your home, including furnishings, and one vehicle, is typically excluded. Beyond that, you can maintain a small income and only $2,000 in assets such as bank accounts, retirement accounts, and other investment holdings.
What to Do if Your First Application Was Denied
When you receive a “Social Security Notice of Disapproved Claim,” you have 60 days to respond. Suppose you have not been in contact with a Social Security disability lawyer in Armstrong County. In that case, you should consider seeking counsel to navigate the appeals process. Failing to file your appeal within the specified timeframe may result in the closure of your claim.
The Berger and Green Social Security disability team is ready to hear from you. We offer a free initial consultation and require no upfront payment from you. Our team can discuss your options, explain your rights, and begin working for a successful resolution of your Social Security disability claim. Contact us today to discuss your claim so that we can look into your case in a timely manner.