If you are disabled or blind and have limited income and resources, you may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), a program administered by the Social Security Administration. Those payments are intended to cover basic necessities, such as food, clothing, and shelter.
The eligibility requirements and the process to apply for SSI benefits can be confusing. People who are disabled and who have limited means often feel overwhelmed. In addition, applications for SSI benefits are frequently denied.
An Erie Supplemental Security Income lawyer who has experience handling these types of cases can explain the requirements, guide you through the application process, and help if your claim has been denied. Call Berger and Green at (412) 661-1400 to speak with a member of our team.
Supplemental Security Income Eligibility Guidelines
Disabled or blind individuals who have limited income and resources may qualify for Supplemental Security Income. The Social Security Administration’s (SSA) Code of Federal Regulations §404.1505 defines a disability as a medical impairment expected to result in death or will last for at least a year that prevents a person from “gainful” activities.
According to the SSA, the Supplemental Security Income program provides disability benefits based on need, not prior employment. If your income is low and your assets are limited, you may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income. The limits on resources, or assets, are $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple. Some resources, such as a home, vehicle, household goods, and personal effects, are not considered when evaluating an application for Supplemental Security Income.
Individuals 65 or older who are not disabled but who fall below the financial threshold may also be eligible for SSI.
For a free legal consultation with a lawyer serving Erie, call (412) 661-1400
How an Erie Supplemental Security Income Lawyer Can Help You
Many applications for SSI are denied because people do not provide all the necessary information. For example, an applicant may not include enough documentation to show that he or she is disabled, according to the SSA’s guidelines.
Berger and Green represents clients across the United States and helps them seek the Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income benefits they deserve. An attorney who has experience handling SSI claims and who understands the requirements can make sure that your application contains enough relevant supporting information.
If your application for Supplemental Security Income benefits was denied, you have the right to appeal. The Social Security Administration offers applicants several opportunities to appeal a denial. You will have 60 days from the date when you received the denial letter to appeal the decision, according to the SSA.
A reconsideration is an independent review of your claim. It will be conducted by someone who was not involved in the initial decision on your application. That individual can review the evidence that you originally submitted, plus new information.
If your application is denied after reconsideration, you may request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. The hearing may be conducted in person or via video.
If the Administrative Law Judge denies your application for Supplemental Security Income benefits, you may ask an Appeals Council to review your case, but it is not required to do so. If an Appeals Council decides to review your application, it may make a decision itself or ask an Administrative Law Judge to review it further.
If the Appeals Council denies your request for SSI benefits or declines to review your case, you will have one last option to appeal. You may file a civil lawsuit in a Federal District Court.
A member of our staff can explain more about the application and appeals processes. Call Berger and Green at (412) 661-1400 to discuss your case.
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Hire an Erie Supplemental Security Income Lawyer
Because we have more than 40 years of experience with handling Social Security Administration programs, including Supplemental Security Income, attorneys at Berger and Green understand the eligibility requirements and the types of information that are needed for the SSA to determine that an applicant meets its guidelines. We can make sure that your application for SSI benefits contains all the required information.
We have helped clients whose initial applications for SSI benefits were denied get the assistance they needed and deserved. If you have already requested benefits and your application was rejected, we can address the reason for the denial. If your application did not include enough information, we could advise you on what evidence you need to show that you are disabled and provide clarification on other issues, such as your income and assets, if necessary.
If your application was denied for an administrative or technical reason, we could help correct the issue. We may have to go through multiple levels of appeals before your application is approved, but we will do that if we believe that you are eligible for benefits.
People who have limited income and assets and who are struggling to make ends meet often think that they could not afford legal fees. Concerns about cost should not stop you from seeking assistance. Berger and Green operates on a contingency basis. We will not charge you any money up front to help you apply for Supplemental Security Income benefits or to appeal a denial. We will only collect a fee if your application is approved. Call our office today at (412) 661-1400 to speak with a member of our staff about how we may be able to assist you.