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Answers to Frequently Asked Questions About Social Security Disability Benefits

If you have questions about your application for Social Security Disability, you are not alone. The inner workings of the Social Security Administration are a mystery to most. Below are answers to some frequently asked questions people commonly ask. If your application for benefits has already been denied, you can trust Walton Law, LLC in Fairhope to represent you throughout the process of appealing the denial to help you ultimately get the benefits you deserve. Call 251-455-5819 for assistance throughout Mobile and Baldwin County.

How soon can I start receiving disability benefits?

Among other frequently asked questions for Social Security Disability (SSD), are how soon one starts to receive them. Social Security Benefits begin after five full months from the established date of your disability. This date is established by the Social Security Administration and may actually be the date you indicated as the “alleged onset date” of your disability in your application, or it may be a later date determined by an Administrative Law Judge.

For Supplemental Security Income (SSI), disability benefits can start as early as the month after the month in which you applied.

These eligibility dates are important in considering back-due benefits. For SSD, if the judge issues a Favorable Decision in your case, you can receive back due benefits from the date following that five-month waiting period, as far back as one year prior to the date of your application, in most cases. If you are found to be eligible for SSI, you can receive back due benefits from the month after the month in which your application was filed.

How is the amount of my benefit determined?

The benefit amount for SSD is based on your entire work history and the amount of “work credits” you have built up over your lifetime. Generally speaking, the more you have worked and paid into the system, the greater your benefits will be. Other factors come into play as well, such as how long it has been since you last worked.

If you are applying for SSI, your benefit amount is calculated based on your income level and the makeup of your household/living arrangements.

Can I go back to work and still receive disability benefits?

Social Security Disability benefits are intended only for people who are permanently disabled from working. However, the Social Security Administration makes it possible for people to test their ability to work without losing their rights to disability benefits or Medicare/Medicaid. These rules are often called “work incentives” and are different depending on whether you are receiving SSD or SSI. If at any point you plan to attempt to return to work, please make sure to inform your attorney immediately to protect your rights to receive benefits during any trial work period.

What is the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?

Medicare helps pay hospital and doctor bills for persons who are 65 years old or older or who are disabled or retired and who have been determined to be eligible for SSD benefits. Medicare coverage for disabled individuals begins approximately 24 months after they first start receiving SSD. Medicare in general covers 80% of reasonable medical bills.

Medicaid provides medical coverage to low-income individuals who qualify. If you qualify for SSI, then you qualify for Medicaid. Medicaid will cover all of the approved charges of the patient, and eligibility begins as soon as you receive your first dollar of SSI.

For more answers to frequently asked questions visit our Video FAQ page where Attorney Randy Walton is interviewed about various matters regarding Social Security and provides answers on video!

We know that this compilation of frequently asked questions may not cover all of your concerns so, please don’t hesitate to contact Randy Walton for immediate help.

When Should I Apply for Social Security Disability?

Social Security Disability cases can last months, if not longer, and the truth is, over 70% of initial applications are denied. If your case is denied and you file an appeal, that’s a process that could drag on and on. That’s why it’s our advice to apply for SSD as soon as possible. This may mean as soon as your monthly income falls below the government’s minimum listed amount, or the day you stop working.

As a Social Security Disability lawyer, I know exactly what it takes to ensure your initial application has the required information and evidence to back up your claim and have the best chance to get approved. If you’ve been denied and want to appeal, Trusted Social Security Attorneys at Walton Law LLC will guide you every step of the way, making the process as quick and seamless as possible.

Is it expensive to hire Social Security Attorney?

No matter the Alabama Social Security attorney you hire to help get your Social Security Disability benefits, the fees are regulated by the Social Security Administration. Your Social Security Attorney is required to file everything with the Social Security Administration and you will pay nothing out of pocket.

The majority of the time, the SSA will approve payments for legal services of no more than 25 percent of benefits or $6,000, whichever is less. This doesn’t take into consideration additional fees your attorney might need to expense, such as obtaining medical evaluations or filing paperwork, but these fees are usually nominal.
Social Security Attorney Randy Walton handles SSD applications and appeals every single day. He knows what your SSD application needs and the way that information should be presented to get you approved.

How Does the Government Define Disability?

If an injury or illness has made it impossible for you to earn a living, you may qualify for financial assistance from the Social Security Administration (SSA). This monthly payment is called Social Security Disability (SSD). That said, it’s actually a lot harder to get approved for SSD than you might think. The SSA has a strict set of guidelines for what types of disabilities are awarded financial assistance. The legal definition of disability is more specific under Social Security than other federal programs. A Social Security Disability Attorney can help guide you through the process.

In order to get approved for SSD, your disability must be expected to last at least 12 months or until death. Your condition also must be severe enough you cannot work or transition to another job. The Social Security Administration knows that there are people out there who try to take advantage of the system, so they make the process of qualifying lengthy and complex, often leaving Alabama residents worried about how they will make everyday expenses.


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