The process of applying for and being approved or denied for SSDI can take months or even years, depending on the medical condition affecting an applicant. Applying for SSDI involves gathering many medical documents, imaging scans, doctor’s reports and proof of hospitalizations. A disability application also needs all sections accurately and correctly filled out. One minor error could further delay processing of an application for disability benefits. However, the Social Security Administrations realizes that people suffering a disabling condition may need financial help while waiting for a decision.
Can I Accept Money from Family Members or Friends While Applying for SSDI?
The SSA considers it acceptable for applicants to take financial aid, food and other necessities while waiting for their disability application to be processed. Even after their application is approved, disabled individuals can still accept periodic cash gifts without affecting their monthly benefits. Cash or food gifts, as well as inheritances or investment returns, are designated as “unearned income by the Social Security Administration. Earned income is any income that should be included on tax returns.
Is a Spouse’s Income Considered Financial Help?
To qualify for SSDI, claimants must prove they have an established work history. The amount of benefits is based primarily on how much income a person has made up to the point they filed their disability application. This is because SSDI is funded by SS taxes that have been paid by employers and workers. Therefore, you may still qualify for SSDI regardless of how much your household as a total earns every year. If the SSA concludes that an injury or medical condition will prevent a claimant from working for more than 12 months, they may only consider an applicant’s ability to earn “gainful” income without taking into account household income.
The rules governing the process of applying for SSDI are complicated and involve legal terms most people do not understand. Contacting the Law Office of Daniel Berger for assistance with submitting your disability application can significantly reduce the risk of being denied for incorrect submission or inadequate documentation. Call today to make a consultation appointment with an experienced disability lawyer.