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The Social Security Disability program provides workers who are unable to work due to an illness or injury with monthly financial benefits. The program is administered by the federal Social Security Administration, and millions of individuals with severe physical and mental disabilities have qualified for assistance in the past.

Obtaining New Bern SSDI benefits could be easier said than done. Many applicants will need help navigating the application process and filing successful appeals for an experienced SSDI attorney. Continue reading to learn more about SSDI benefits and how they are administered to individuals suffering from disabling medical conditions.

What is Considered a Disability?

To obtain SSDI benefits in New Bern, a person must first prove to the Social Security Administration that they are disabled. Even if a person suffers from a disabling injury or medical condition, they may not qualify for benefits if the Social Security Administration does not consider their injury or condition disabling.

The SSDI program does not pay benefits for short-term or partial disability, and each year, the SSA publishes a list of qualifying conditions. Typically, the SSDI will consider a person disabled if they:

  • Cannot perform the work they normally do
  • Cannot perform other work due to their injury or medical condition
  • Have a qualifying condition that is expected to last at least 12 months or end in death

If a person could do other work or maintain their current job with reasonable accommodations, they will typically be denied benefits. Employees suffering from short-term disabilities are expected to rely on their employee benefits, personal savings, and other sources of income. An accomplished attorney could help a person determine whether their injuries could be covered by SSDI benefits.

Work Credit Requirements

In conjunction with meeting the previously mentioned requirements, those in applying for SSDI benefits in New Bern must also have a certain number of work credits. When a person works a legal job and pays FICA taxes, they will automatically receive credits for their contribution. Typically, the number of credits a person earns will depend on their income. Applicants must also have earned their work credits within a certain period of time to qualify for SSDI benefits.

No matter the income, a person could only earn up to four work credits a year. As of 2018, $1,320 in wages is equal to a single work credit. Once a person earns $5,280 a year, they could automatically receive four work credits. A person will typically need a minimum of 40 work credits to qualify for SSDI, and a minimum 20 of these credits must have been earned in the last 10 years. It is still possible for younger workers to qualify for SSDI benefits.

Seeking Legal Help

Applying for SSDI benefits could be difficult, and it is not uncommon for applicants to spend a year or more waiting for benefits. A high percentage of first-time applications will be initially denied, and many applicants could need the aid of a skilled SSDI attorney. An SSDI attorney may be able to help them appeal the initial rejection and handle the remainder of the SSDI application process.

Discuss your New Bern SSDI benefits case with an attorney today. If your initial application for New Bern SSDI benefits has been denied, you may be considering giving up altogether. While the application process could be immensely frustrating, there are ways to speed it up and ensure you get the benefits you have worked so hard for in the past. Discuss your SSDI case today with a lawyer near you.