When you are dealing with a disability, you often need to make temporary or long-term changes to your life. Understanding what you need to know legally is important. After receiving your medical diagnosis, you may have to reach out to a legal professional to aid you in obtaining the proper benefits. Here is what you need to know about long term disability benefits and disability law.
What do you do first?
Your doctor has diagnosed you with a disability that could alter your work and home environment. You may find that you can no longer work the way you used to and need some time to heal or think about the next steps. One out of five people in the US are diagnosed with a disability and can receive disability pay, and you can apply for benefits on the SSA website to see if you qualify. There are a variety of options to choose from if you need health insurance or a drug program.
If you are diagnosed with a disability such as arthritis, chronic illness, back injuries, cancer, or a mental health illness, then you are protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act, and you have certain rights pertaining to your disability. For those who experience a change at work in relation to their disability, they can find help with getting a disability lawyer.
What does a disability lawyer do?
A disability lawyer specializes in various disabilities such as chronic illness, cancer, and mental health issues, and they also assist in guidance with social security issues. Their job is to review your claim and make sure your application is correctly done. A lawyer collects information from your physician or your healthcare provider and sifts through the appropriate paperwork. The social security offices have large volumes of people sending in documents, so your lawyer assists in getting through on your behalf.
While you don’t need to necessarily hire a disability lawyer, getting a legal representative to help guide you is a good idea. Your lawyer reviews your claim and discusses any issues or discrepancies on your application. In order to get benefits, you must have had a disability for a certain amount of time within a certain timeframe. An attorney can aid in proper application and finding out which policy fits your needs. 40 percent of applicants are approved, but if you are denied for whatever reason, then you can appeal. An attorney will secure a hearing so your case can be heard. If you are financially struggling, you can aquire a lawyer who works on contingency and only gets paid when your case is successful.
What is long term disability?
There are two types of disability benefits in regards to when you actually receive those benefits. A short term disability claim begins with getting a medical note from your doctor. You can then apply for monetary benefits for the time you are out of work, for up to six months. This temporary claim is for individuals on maternity leave or suffering from a broken bone, for example.
Long term disability is usually required through your employer. You pay out from each paycheck for social security, which is another avenue you can take. Receiving SSDI or social security disability insurance can take longer (up to five months) than long term disability. There are work credits you get that determine if you are eligible for this insurance. SSDI requires you to have been disabled for a long time and that you can’t perform any work duties, so long term may be a better option for you. You can get 60 to 65 percent of your pay when out of work, which can last until you are of retirement age.