When Should I Apply for Social Security Disability Benefits?

If you have been contemplating applying for these benefits the time to apply is now.

You should apply for Social Security Disability benefits as soon as you feel you have become disabled and know that you will be unable to work for at least 12 months. This does not mean you have to be out of work for 12 months before you apply. This means you have been diagnosed with a disability that will keep you from working for at least 12 months.

The Social Security Disability process can take a long time; you should not wait to apply for benefits. The first step to apply for benefits is to submit an application to the Social Security Administration. It takes approximately three to six months for a decision to be made on your application. If you are denied from that application, you will then submit a Request for Hearing if you live in Pennsylvania. If you live in Ohio or West Virginia you must first reconsideration before you can submit a Request for Hearing. The current wait time for a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge is more than 18 months.

It is also important to know that to be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits (SSD), you have to have a certain amount of work credits. These credits are accrued over the years that you have worked and paid into the Social Security FICA tax. These credits, however, expire. Once you stop working and paying into the Social Security FICA tax, the credits will eventually expire. This is known as your date last insured. This will not happen right away. If you have questions regarding your date last insured, you can contact the Social Security Administration.

You may be also eligible for the disability benefit known as Supplemental Security Income. These disability benefits are based on assets and income instead of work credits. You can call the Social Security Administration or an experienced Social Security Disability attorney to see if you are eligible.

As you can see, it is important to apply for these benefits right away. You do not want to lose out on the benefits you deserve. If you feel you are ready to apply for Social Security Disability benefits or have questions regarding your eligibility, contact the experienced Social Security Disability attorneys at Berger and Green today. We offer free no obligation consultations.