Get Legal Advice From An Experienced Ssi And Ssdi Lawyer
Practicing law since 1988, our attorney Ellene Welsh has secured disability payments for numerous individuals in Georgia. She knows what documentation is necessary to present in an appeal, will represent you at any hearings and can answer all your questions about your case. Rest assured, she will remain by your side each step of the way.
To arrange a complimentary initial consultation, contact us. We look forward to working with you and pursuing the SSDI or SSI benefits you deserve. We handle SSDI and SSI cases on a contingency fee basis. That means you owe us no attorney fees until we secure benefits for you.
If Your Application Is Denied
After we review your application and the information you provided, we may decide you do not meet the qualifications for disability benefits.
If you disagree with our decision, you have the right to ask us to look at your application again. The notice you receive from us that says you don’t qualify will explain how to appeal our decision and the time period in which you must make the request.
If we decide you don’t qualify:
Because you are not disabled under our rules, you can appeal our decision online.
The online disability report will ask you for updated information about your medical condition and any treatment, tests, or doctor visits since we made our decision.
Information About Family Members
- Social Security numbers and proof of age for each family member who may qualify for benefits and
- Proof of marriage, if your spouse is applying for benefits, as well as dates of prior marriages, if applicable.
If you don’t have all the documents you need, don’t delay filing for benefits. We will help you get the information you need.
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The Disability Application Process
Whether you apply online, by phone, or in person, the disability benefits application process follows these general steps:
- You gather the information and documents you need to apply. We recommend you print and review the . It will help you gather the information and documents you need to complete the application.
- You complete and submit your application.
- We review your application to make sure you meet our for disability benefits.
- We confirm you worked enough years to qualify.
- We evaluate any current work activities.
- We process your application and forward your case to the Disability Determination Services office in your state.
- This state agency makes the disability determination decision.
To learn more about who decides if you have a disability, read our publication .
Once You’ve Applied
Processing time for disability applications vary depending on the nature of the disability, necessary medical evidence or examinations, and applicable quality reviews.
Once we receive your application, well review it and contact you if we have questions. We might request additional documents from you before we can proceed.
Look For Our Response
When the state agency makes a determination on your case, youll receive a letter in the mail with our decision. It generally takes three to six months for an initial decision. If you included information about other family members when you applied, well let you know if they may be able to receive benefits on your record.
Check The Status
What Disability Programs Are There In Georgia
Georgia doesnt have a state-based disability benefits programbut there are some national and private disability options Georgians can qualify for.
1. Social Security Disability Insurance : SSDI supports Americans who can no longer work due to a medical condition. Generally if youve worked for five of the last ten years, you qualify for SSDI . The program is run through the Social Security Administration, and the amount you receive depends largely on how much youve paid into Social Security on your taxes.
2. Supplemental Security Income : If you havent worked enough, or worked recently enough, to qualify for SSDI, you may qualify for SSI. Its another federal program, and you use the same application to apply. SSI is only for individuals with very little income and very few assets, and generally pays out less monthly than SSDI.
3. Long Term / Short Term Private Disability Insurance: If you purchased disability insurance prior to you becoming disabledyou can file a claim with the private insurer. These pay out a percentage of your former incomebut the exact amount and duration of the benefit will depend on the policy.
4. Veterans Disability Benefits: If you served in the military and suffered an injury that left you unable to work, or youre retired but have a medical condition as a result of your service, you should apply for disability benefits through Veterans Affairs. For more information, visit the VAs disability benefits website.
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Contact Our Attorneys Today If You Need Help With Your Social Security Disability Application
Many Social Security Disability applicants get their first application denied. At John Foy & Associates, our Social Security Disability lawyers can help you strengthen your application and/or appeal a denial. We can also help you determine if you qualify and make sure your application continues all of the required information.
Dont consider a denied application to be the end of the road. You have options. For a FREE consultation to go over your application, call us today at or fill out the form on this page to get started today.
Call or text or complete a Free Case Evaluation form
Please Answer A Few Questions To Help Us Determine Your Eligibility
Georgia residents can apply for disability benefits through their local Social Security Administration field office. The Social Security Administration has manages two programs to provide disability payments to those who have been disabled and are no longer able to support themselves and their families: Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income . The State of Georgia does not offer short-term disability benefits.
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Determining Substantial Gainful Activity
Your condition must prevent you from performing whats known as substantial gainful activity in order for you to qualify for benefits. SGA basically means work in which you make more than a certain amount each month. The exact amount changes each year. The amount for 2019 is $1,220 for non-blind applicants and $2,040 for blind applicants. This does not include income you might be receiving from sources other than employment, such as investments or interest.
If youre making more than what counts as SGA each month, the SSA will not consider you disabled. Otherwise, theyll determine whether youre able to perform the work of your last job or jobs you had in the last 15 years. If the answer is no, the SSA will see if you can still perform other types of work. Theyll also consider facts about you like your education level, age, skills youve learned, and all limitations you have.
You also cannot apply for benefits if you were already denied disability benefits within the last 60 days or you are currently receiving benefits on your Social Security record.
How Long Before You Receive A Decision Regarding A Disability Application In Georgia
Disability benefits can help alleviate some of the financial stress people dealing with long-term or permanent disabilities face. However, the truth is that many applicants for disability benefits must endure a disability hearing before an Administrative Law Judge before receiving benefits.
A disability hearing occurs after your application has been reviewed by the state adjudicator and denied. The adjudicator reviews your application, medical records, and other information you have supplied. Once they have reviewed all of your information, they decide based on how well your information meets the criteria established by the SSA.
If your application is initially denied, you may request a disability hearing. A hearing allows you to go before a judge and plead your case. The SSA will assign the case to an administrative law judge who will then consider the evidence you initially presented as a brand new case.
Once youve requested a disability hearing, it can take anywhere from 406 to 538 days to get the hearing you asked for in the state of Georgia. After your hearing date, it can take anywhere from 45-90 days to get the judges decision.
The SSAs Office of Disability and Adjudication Review manages the disability hearings in Georgia. There are several ODAR offices in Georgia, and the one that is in charge of managing your case depends on where in the state you live. Where you live also determines the length of time you will wait for a disability hearing.
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How Much Will It Cost To Get My Medical Records
Georgia law places a limit on how much a doctor’s office or hospital can charge you for your medical records. In Georgia, medical providers can charge a $0.75 for the first 20 pages, $0.65 for pages 21-100, and $0.50 for each page copied over 100. A provider can also charge a $20.00 preparation fee, a $7.50 fee to certify the records, and can seek reimbursement for postage.
A medical provider cannot charge for mental health records.
You Automatically Get Medicare When You Turn 65
- Well mail you a welcome package with your Medicare card 3 months before your Medicare coverage starts.
Sign up for Part B if you live in Puerto Rico or outside the U.S.You get Part A automatically. If you want Part B, you need to sign up for it. If you dont sign up for Part B within 3 months of turning 65, you might have to wait to sign up and pay a monthly late enrollment penalty.
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Short And Long Term Disability
Employees have option to enroll in Short and/or Long Term Disability coverage on themselves only through The Standard.
Short-Term Disability With The Standard
If you choose short-term disability coverage, this plan will work with other income benefits to replace 60% of your Benefit Salary up to $1,000 per week. If you receive other benefits, that total 60% of your Benefit Salary, the short-term disability plan will not pay for this disability.
- Seven Day Benefit Waiting Period
- Thirty Day Benefit Waiting Period
Enrolling For Short-Term Disability Coverage
Your premiums will be based on your coverage level and Benefit Salary. Since you pay for this coverage with after-tax premiums, you wont pay taxes on the benefits you receive. Short-Term disability does not pay while you are using accrued sick leave but will pay while on annual/compensatory leave or while on leave without pay.
Long-Term Disability With the Standard
The Flexible Benefits Programs Long-Term Disability coverage works with other benefits you are eligible to receive, including Social Security, workers compensation, other disability plans and programs, including the State retirement systems. The plan assures that your combined disability benefits from all these sources will equal 60% of your Benefit Salary up to $4,000 a month.
How Long LTD Benefits May Be Payable
Enrolling For Long-Term Disability Coverage
Detailed plan information can be found in the FlexibleBenefit Rate Chart
How Do I Know If I Qualify For Social Security Disability In Georgia
Social Security Disability benefits were created as insurance for people who cant work because of a medical condition. However, the process is more complicated than it sounds. If you submit an application for Social Security Disability , youll need to understand what those who review your application are looking for to confirm that you qualify for benefits.
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How Work Credits Work
You must have a certain number of work credits to qualify for the work portion of SSD. For most people, the minimum work credits are 40 overall with 20 being earned within the last 10 years before you became disabled. If you are a younger worker, you may be able to qualify with fewer credits.
The way credits are earned has changed throughout the years but currently, you can earn up to four credits per year if youre working and paying Social Security taxes. If youve worked a significant portion of your lifetime, chances are good that youve earned enough credits to meet the minimum for benefits.
If you dont have enough work credits, you probably wont qualify for benefits. However, you can earn more if you return to work at any time. Your work credits stay on your record.
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Who Can Apply For Disability In Georgia
If you have determined that you think you need to file for disability in the state of Georgia, you need to meet specific eligibility requirements before you apply. You must meet the following criteria before you complete an online application for disability benefits:
- You must be 18 or older.
- You cannot currently be receiving Social Security benefits on your own record.
- You cant work due to a long-term medical condition. Your condition must be expected to last a minimum of one year, or it must be determined that it could result in your death.
- You must not have applied and been denied benefits within the last 60 days. If you had a recent application denied for medical reasons, you could begin an Internet appeal to request the denial be reviewed.
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When To Hire A Georgia Disability Lawyer
Over the years, we have found that many folks have little to know understanding of the disability process. Many believe that being diagnosed with a condition that sounds horrible means they are automatically disabled. And many individuals know that they feel horrible most days, which should be enough to be found disabled.
Unfortunately, this feeling is never quite enough. Instead, the disability application process can be grueling and unnecessarily imbalanced against those seeking benefits. Much of the imbalance stems from agency rules that require evidentiary showings that can be unduly burdensome. This is particularly true when considering the changes made in the Listing of Impairments over the last decade, as well as the changes made in the domains relevant to childhood disability.
And as you may already know, medical record-keeping leaves much to be desired. Treating physicians and caregivers are often not diligent in accurately noting a patients specific complaints in their charts. Another obstacle in this regard since the shift from handwritten notes to software-managed electronic files is the repeated boilerplate charts that see very little revision of patient complaints and clinical findings over time.
Contact us today for your free consultation.
Do You Need A Disability Attorney When You Apply For Disability In Georgia
If your disability application is initially denied, you will likely wait more than a year before you have your disability hearing. Most people dont want to wait that long before getting benefits. Unfortunately, the only way to avoid the lengthy process is to get approved when you initially apply. Having an experienced disability lawyer assist you from the beginning could increase your chances of being approved in the first stage.
While you can undoubtedly apply for disability on your own, there are benefits to having an attorney beginning with the initial application. An attorney can help you gather the correct information to support your disability claim. They can also help you complete your application so that its ready for the Social Security Administration to review it.
Having an attorney help you complete your application can increase your chances of initial approval. However, if you should still be denied benefits, they are ready to assist you with the next part of the process, which is the appeals process. They can help you file an appeal, gather the appropriate information to support your case, and prepare for your hearing.
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How To File For Disability In Georgia
This article was co-authored by Clinton M. Sandvick, JD, PhD. Clinton M. Sandvick worked as a civil litigator in California for over 7 years. He received his JD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998 and his PhD in American History from the University of Oregon in 2013.There are 13 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 53,338 times.
If you are a Georgia resident who suffers from an injury or condition that interferes with all work-related activities, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. The Social Security Administration in conjunction with the Disability Adjudication Section of the Georgia Department of Labor determine if you are eligible to participate in the disability program. To file for disability, you must fill out disability paperwork that gives the details of your medical condition and then submit your paperwork to a Social Security office or online. The SSA will then forward your paperwork to the Georgia DAS for review.
Getting Approved If You Qualify
Although the qualifications sound pretty simple, actually getting approved is another story. When you submit your application, the SSA uses a specific determination process when going over your file.
For example, your medical condition must be severe enough to meet the SSAs disability criteria. The SSA has a Listing of Impairments with conditions that may qualify. The condition must greatly limit you from being able to perform even basic work-related activities, such as walking, sitting, standing, lifting, and remembering, for at least a year.
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How Much Ssi Will I Receive In Georgia
While the federal government funds most of the SSI payment , Georgia provides a small state supplement for eligible residents living in Medicaid facilities . For an eligible individual, the supplement is $20 for couples, the amount is $40.
The Georgia Department of Human Resources manages the SSI supplement. You do not need to apply separately for the state SSI supplement because eligible SSI recipients are tracked by the DHR’s computer database once they are approved for disability.