Philadelphia Workers' Compensation and Social Security Disability Law Blog

Difference between disability benefits and workers' compensation

Suffering an injury or illness while on the job can be stressful. When you are injured or sickened and have to miss work, there are a few options out there to help. Those include workers' compensation, Social Security disability benefits and state disability benefits. There are differences between them all and you should understand those differences so you know which one is best for your situation.

One of the most important things you need to understand is that worker's compensation is provided to you if you suffer an injury while on the job. This compensation is in lieu of a lawsuit against your employer. Almost all employers are required by law to carry workers' compensation insurance for their employees.

How to prove chronic pain for a Social Security disability claim

Chronic pain can be utterly debilitating -- so much so that it's important to list it as a separate condition when you file your Social Security disability claim. That allows Social Security to consider the condition as a specific part of what makes you disabled.

But how do you prove chronic pain? Pain isn't something that can be measured with an x-ray or blood test, and it isn't something that everyone experiences in the exact same way.

Daylight savings shift leads to increase in workplace accidents

A lawmaker from Michigan thinks it's time to do away with daylight savings time. His reasoning? Among other things, he claims that the switch to and from daylight savings creates many workplace safety hazards. The facts are on his side, the man says. According to his research, the time change is not healthy or productive for anyone.

The reasoning is fairly simple. Humans have internal biological clocks that respond poorly when they are changed abruptly. Twice each year, most Americans have their internal clocks shocked, leading to a notable increase in health affects ranging from heart attacks to miscarriages. Even more concerning, the abrupt loss of an hour in March usually results in a sharp increase in workplace accidents in the days after the change.

Qualified medical conditions for Social Security Disability

The Social Security Administration has a listing of disabilities and impairments that automatically qualify someone for Social Security Disability Benefits (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). These include both physical and mental impairments. The list is called the blue book and the individual's condition must meet, or is equal to, the listed criteria.

The updated blue book for 2017 lists the following conditions:

How could the number of forklift accidents be reduced?

Forklifts are present in nearly every factory in the country. They're also connected to around 100 deaths, more than 34,000 serious injuries and over 61,000 minor injuries each year -- easily making them some of the most dangerous objects around the workplace for many U.S. employees.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 70 percent of those accidents each year could have been prevented. To put it in terms of numbers, if all of the preventable accidents were stopped, there would only be 30 deaths and a little over 10,000 serious injuries caused by preventable accidents next year.

Don't let a trust disqualify your government benefits

Those who live with a mental disability face challenges each and every day that the rest of us rarely consider. Living with any disability can be exceptionally costly, and many individuals who do depend on Social Security and Medicaid benefits to keep the costs manageable. However, these programs are generally based need demonstrated by individual income, which is where things can get a bit tricky.

Let's assume that a person is living with a mental disability and has also been fortunate enough to be the beneficiary of ongoing payouts from a trust set up for him or her by a parent or some other party. Of course, this is great news, right? Well, yes and no.

Eligibility requirements for both SSDI and VA disability

It might be possible for someone receiving disability benefits from the Veterans Administration to also receive Social Security Disability Insurance from the Social Security Administration. SSDI is issued by the Social Security Administration to disabled workers in the form of monthly benefits. In order to receive the benefits you must have worked enough and earned enough credits.

To earn the benefits, you must have worked full-time for a total of five years out of the last 10 years. This work requirement by years varies by the age of the person applying for the benefits. One thing you must understand is that disability from the Veterans Administration is only available for veterans who suffer a disability related to their time in the service.

Can low back pain be adequately treated without pain medication?

Low back pain is one of the most common conditions that sidelines the American employee—and pain medication has been a standard feature of its treatment for a long time.

That may soon change. Many doctors are suggesting new methods of dealing with low back pain and chronic pain in general that only look toward pain medications, particularly opioids, as a last resort.

What is residual functional capacity?

The Social Security Administration can be a complex and difficult institution to deal with, especially for those who suffer from mental illnesses. While it is certainly possible to receive Social Security benefits due to mental ailments rather than more traditional physical problems, the SSA must first assess to what extent your mental ailment reduces your capacity to work, even after your ailment has been officially recognized. The SSA accomplishes this by examining your "residual functional capacity," or RFC. For those who are fighting to receive fair Social Security benefits for a mental ailment, understanding RFC is crucial.

To determine RFC, the SSA will consult both your medical records and input from informal sources, such as your community, your family and your coworkers. Subjects applying for mental health disability benefits must be evaluated in five areas to determine their level of functional impairment and need. These areas include their ability to concentrate on tasks over a period of time, adapting to new environments and challenges, their ability to engage in social interactions, the quality of their memory and levels of comprehension of information and any substance abuse that may contribute to the mental ailment.

What if my Social Security claim is denied?

If you have had your Social Security benefit request denied, it is easy to become overwhelmed and feel hopeless. After all, for many individuals, SS disability benefits are a crucial component of making ends meet. Be that as it may, the truth of the matter is that about half of all people who apply for SS disability benefits have their requests denied, so you are certainly not alone in your frustrations. While it is understandable to be frustrated, there are still steps you can take to appeal the decision.

The first thing you must do after having an SS benefit request denied is carefully read the response in which the agency denied the request. Each denial is based on several factors, and the sooner you know why your claim was not honored, the sooner you can go about collecting whatever documentation you will need to straighten it out.

Tell Us About Your Case

Can’t Find Something?

summit pharmacy

Summit Pharmacy - Use our easy Online enrollment application to apply for workers compensation benefits from Summit Pharmacy.