Whether filing for the first time or dealing with an appeal after a denial, individuals have to cope with compiling the information, the paperwork and medical details of their situations
Belleville, Ill. (Vocus) July 1, 2008
Every day, people across the United States must stop working because of a disability, disease or chronic condition. According to Allsup, the challenges when faced with these circumstances can be overwhelming, including where to begin with an application for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Allsup represents people nationwide for these benefits.
Each year, nearly 2.5 million people apply for SSDI, and the number is increasing rapidly. According to a recent report by the Social Security Administration, the number of recipients increased by almost 290,000 in the past year. Today, more than 7.1 million disabled workers receive SSDI benefits, says the recently released Congressional Statistics-December 2007 report.
“Whether filing for the first time or dealing with an appeal after a denial, individuals have to cope with compiling the information, the paperwork and medical details of their situations,” said Jim Allsup, CEO of Allsup, which has been providing assistance to people with disabilities for nearly 25 years. “SSDI is a complex and overwhelming process that takes a certain determination to complete. This is especially true when considering the other circumstances facing our overloaded Social Security Administration.”
However, there is a way to begin the SSDI process and start to sort through the details. Allsup provides information on the two primary categories — employment background and medical history — that can help someone get prepared for filing for SSDI.
Category One: Your Employment History
Social Security Disability Insurance is a payroll tax-funded, federal insurance program.
A portion of the FICA taxes that people pay is set aside for SSDI (as well as Social Security retirement and Medicare). SSDI, established in 1954, is designed to provide individuals with income if they are unable to work due to a disability or until their condition improves. It also guarantees income if their condition does not improve. Once recipients meet retirement age – 65 or older – they move from SSDI to Social Security retirement income.
To qualify for SSDI, someone must have worked and paid into the program (payroll taxes) for five of the last 10 years. Because this benefit is tied to people’s employment history, the details of the places where they worked, how long they worked and their earnings are required for the application.
Many of these details appear on an individual’s Social Security statement. The SSA mails an earnings statement to working Americans each year. It includes basic information about earnings and indicates the amount people (and their families) will receive each month if they become disabled or retire. A sample statement is available here. Allsup can help obtain the information for individuals if they do not have their statement, or they can request it online.
Other required information includes how long the condition has kept someone from working, and whether they are receiving workers’ compensation, state disability or other related benefits.
Category Two: Your Medical History
If someone is permanently disabled, then it’s likely he or she already has a pile of medical paperwork, records and bills at home. Dealing with healthcare expenses and making financial decisions is a hassle, but applying for SSDI is an important step.
That’s why applicants’ medical diagnoses and details about the doctors they visit and when they visited them are important for their SSDI application. They will need information on the hospital or medical facilities they may have visited, as well as information on the restrictions and limitations that have resulted from the injury, illness or chronic condition.
Allsup has been representing disability applicants for 24 years, and has helped more than 100,000 applicants maneuver through the SSDI process. This expertise and focus on truly helping individuals and their families drives the company’s efforts to educate and help individuals throughout this process.
For more details on what applicants need to file for SSDI benefits, a one-page printable document is available online at Allsup.com. Click here to view the “Getting Prepared” section of information.
Allsup, Belleville, Ill., is a leading nationwide provider of financial and healthcare related services to people with disabilities. Founded in 1984, Allsup has helped more than 100,000 people receive their entitled Social Security Disability Insurance and Medicare benefits. Allsup employs more than 500 professionals who deliver services directly to consumers and their families, or through their employers and long-term disability insurance carriers.
For more information, visit http://www.Allsup.com .
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