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The Social Security Disability Insurance program aims to provide financial benefits to workers who are unable to work. If an individual sustains an injury or develops an illness that prevents them from working in any capacity, they may have a right to file for benefits if they meet certain criteria.

Unfortunately, obtaining benefits can be remarkably difficult, and without a Chapel Hill SSDI lawyer on their side, most applicants will be denied benefits. If you or someone you care about has been denied benefits or intends to file for disability insurance in the future, speak with a distinguished personal injury lawyer about how they can help your case.

Basic Eligibility Standards

Even if a person hires a Chapel Hill SSDI lawyer, they will need to meet certain eligibility standards if they wish to receive social security disability benefits.

According to the Social Security Administration, any person who cannot perform “substantial gainful activity” will be considered disabled. In addition to not being able to perform gainful activity, a person must meet the following conditions:

  • The injured or ill person cannot perform the job they worked prior to their injury or illness
  • The injured or ill person is not capable of performing any other type of work
  • The injury or illness in question has lasted for a period of at least 12 months or is terminal

Short-term and partial disabilities are not covered by SSDI, and during the application process, all applicants will need to submit medical documentation.

Other Considerations

Individuals who are capable of performing work in a similar field with reasonable accommodation may be denied SSDI benefits. It is also important for applicants to read the eligibility requirements carefully, as all illnesses and injuries will not qualify.

The Social Security Administration will also take the following factors into considering whether someone intends to work and receive benefits at the same time. Anyone who would like to do so should contact a Chapel Hill SSDI lawyer. The Administration has very strict income limits, and if a person exceeds these limits, they may find that they are no longer eligible for benefits. Individuals who are currently unemployed do not have to worry about this fact.

Injured and sick individuals who cannot work at all will have a greater chance of having their application approved. However, if the Administration believes that any type of work can be performed with modifications, a person may be denied benefits. For example, if a person works as a bank teller and sustains an injury that makes it difficult to stand, the SSA may recommend the person find employment in a field that does not require as much standing.

Requesting a Hearing

Obtaining SSDI benefits is not an easy process, and the majority of applicants will be denied the first time they apply. If this occurs, they should hire a Chapel Hill SSDI lawyer to represent them during the hearing. Claimants who are denied have a right to request an appeal, and if this appeal is not granted, they may request a formal hearing. In a hearing, the claimant can submit evidence that proves they are injured and unable to return to work. If you need help getting SSDI benefits, you should consult a Chapel Hill SSDI lawyer. They know how frustrating the application and hearing processes can be, and will do everything in their power to help you successfully challenge your denial.