If you want to know if you qualify for Social Security Disability in Ohio is to speak with a Social Security Disability lawyer about your situation and talk about the options that may be available to you. A disability benefits attorney can explain the qualifications and review your information to see if you meet the criteria.
You can learn more about the rules for receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) online. Once you are ready to file, we can help you prepare your claim, file your application, and fight for the benefits you deserve.
Each Disability Program Has Its Own Strict Technical Qualifications
Before a disability examiner ever looks at your file to see if you suffer from a qualifying impairment, it will need to meet all the technical qualifications. Staff from the local Social Security office will check to ensure you meet these qualifications before forwarding your file on to have your medical condition evaluated.
Each program has its own technical qualifications, so if you do not qualify for one, you may qualify for the other.
Social Security Disability Insurance is a disability program for workers whose health now prevents them from working and earning a sustainable wage. There is no income requirement for this program. To qualify, you must:
- Have enough work credits earned from previous employment
- Have an earned income—money earned from a job or contract position—that is lower than the current Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level
Your benefit amount depends on your average wages over the last few years you worked. The formula is complex, but those who earned more during their working years generally get paid more benefits, up to the program limits.
Supplemental Security Income is a type of monthly benefit you may qualify for if you have a disability or are over age 65. There is no work credit requirement for SSI, but qualifying for SSI is often difficult. You must have very little household income and few assets to qualify.
SSI benefits are a flat amount each month, and you do not earn more based on previous jobs or other factors. For those who qualify, SSDI benefits are generally higher than SSI payments.
Qualifying Based on Your Medical Impairments or Mental Health Condition
The Social Security Administration publishes a resource called the Blue Book that outlines hundreds of diagnoses and impairments, along with the necessary evidence to prove you qualify for disability based on each entry. To qualify, you will need to not only meet these standards but ensure the disability examiner handling your application has access to the necessary medical evidence to support your claim.
When you apply for disability, you must include contact information for all your care providers. The disability examiner will use this information to request your medical record and relevant documentation. This could include:
- Medical imaging such as X-rays, MRIs, and CT scan results
- Laboratory testing results
- Notes about treatments and outcomes
- Any documentation of your symptoms, diagnosis, and prognosis
- Documentation of any related impairments
You can also qualify without meeting an impairment listing from the Blue Book through an evaluation known as your residual functional capacity (RFC). An RFC evaluation allows Social Security to look at the overall effect your health has on your ability to work. This means that even if you do not meet the strict criteria in the Blue Book, you could qualify because of a medical condition plus chronic pain, medication side effects, or symptoms of another condition.
To get your RFC, the disability examiner may:
- Evaluate your abilities based on your medical record and the information in your application
- Ask your doctor to complete an evaluation
- Ask you to attend a consultative examination and have that doctor evaluate you
If your RFC evaluation finds you cannot work any job and earn a sustainable wage, you will likely get approved for disability benefits.
Berger and Green Can Help You Navigate the Application and Appeals Process
Not only can Berger and Green’s Ohio disability attorneys explain your qualifications and let you know if you qualify for social security disability in Ohio, but we can help you file your application for disability. We can also work with you if the Social Security Administration denies your claim. This is a common occurrence even for applicants who qualify for disability.
If you receive a denial notice, reach out to our team as soon as possible. You only have a short time to request reconsideration. This is the first step in the appeal process. We can handle it on your behalf if you call us and there is sufficient time to do so.
If you do not get approved during reconsideration, we can request an appeal hearing and represent you in front of an Administrative Law Judge. We will fight for the disability benefits you deserve. Call Berger and Green today at (412) 661-1400 for a free case review.