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Tips to Get a Head Start with a Social Security Disability Claim


If you recently developed a medical condition that makes it impossible to work and earn a living, you may qualify for disability programs established by the federal government. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has oversight over the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) systems. Both are intended to provide financial support if you cannot work because of a disabling medical condition. Each program has its own eligibility rules, and you must meet the criteria to be approved for benefits.

With this brief summary of Social Security disability, you might consider applying. It can be difficult to know where to begin with SSDI/SSI programs, but some tips can help you with planning. You should rely on a Maryland Social Security disability lawyer for assistance with the legal process, as mistakes can lead to a denial or unfortunate delays. A summary of how to get started with SSDI and SSI is also informative.

Learn About Eligibility for SSDI/SSI: Both federal disability programs are similar in their requirements regarding your injury or ailment, which you should assess initially. Your medical condition must prevent you from working and earning an income at a level established by SSA rules. Plus, it must be one that is expected to last at least 12 months or lead to death.

For SSDI, you are also required to have a recent work history, during which time you paid into Social Security disability. If you are applying for SSI, a needs-based program, you need to show factors related to your net worth.

 Coordinate with Your Physician: Because the medical requirement is so central to SSDI and SSI application, you should start building your case early on. SSA will require a special medical evaluation as part of processing your claim, so you can rely on your physician for support. Make sure to inform your doctor about all symptoms of your medical condition, especially limitations that affect your ability to work.

 Gather Paperwork: Your medical records will certainly be a critical part of your application for SSDI or SSI benefits, but you must include other documentation to show that you qualify.

  • SSDI: Your paperwork should cover all work from recent years.
  • SSI: Include all documentation related to your net worth, such as your assets and income from all sources.

 Submit Application: Once you have all documents organized and ready for your SSDI/SSI claim, you can complete the forms for Social Security disability benefits. You must submit the application packet online or via mail according to SSA rules. Note that you should continue to update with new information as necessary.

Your Maryland SSDI/SSI Attorney Will Handle Details

These tips should help you get started with Social Security disability benefits, but legal help is still essential. To learn more about whether you qualify, please contact the Law Offices of Steinhardt, Siskind and Lieberman, LLC. We can schedule a free consultation at our Maryland offices in Glen Burnie, Owings Mills, Ellicott City, or Annapolis. After reviewing your situation, a Social Security disability lawyer will explain the laws.

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