Everyone, at some point in their life, has a moment when their body fails them. For some, this happens sooner in life, rather than later. This can pose a real crisis for those that have many years left in their life, how does one provide for themselves when they have a disability? If you have contributed taxable wages over your lifetime, you could be eligible for government-backed programs like Social Security Disability and/or Supplemental Security Income.
An important thing to note is what the Social Security Administration, or SSA, considers the definition of disabled to be. These criteria must be met in order to meet the minimum disability requirements. One cannot perform the work that you did prior to your medical condition, one cannot do other types of work because of your medical condition and, lastly, a disability has lasted for a continuous period of at least 12 months, or is expected to result in death. Total disability is the only type covered by SSD and is an important component if seeking to qualify for SSD/SSI benefits.
While this is a great start, the qualification process does not stop there. The SSA will examine your work history, both the hours and the specifics of the jobs, one’s medical records, and also one’s education, skills and other factors that impact a person’s overall ability to work. Whether a person can do other work also fits into the puzzle during the evaluation process. This is what’s known as gainful employment.
A person’s disability is not necessarily made better by time. Rather, as time goes on, a person’s disability tends to get worse, not better. That’s why there is no time like the present to seek out the disability claims process. The sooner one begins, the sooner they could potentially see the fruits of their efforts.