When the health of individuals in Pennsylvania is so severely impaired that he or she is unable to work, it might be best for the individual to consider federal programs that are specifically designed for these matters. Social Security disability insurance, or SSDI, was developed to provide long-term financial protection for workers that have paid into the program through their employment. And while SSDI was developed to replace only some of a person’s lost work income, it is important to consider what makes an applicant eligible and possible pitfalls one might encounter in the process.
Some applicants fail to timely apply for these benefits because they fear that they will be denied. While the program can only approve a certain number of Social Security disability claims each year, being denied is not the end all for applicants. In fact, many get denied initially; however, applicants are able to appeal this decision, and if administration determines that the applicant does have a severe disability, he or she will likely be approved.
While some believe that SSDI will replace their income 100 percent, this is not true. It is considered more of a safety net for those that are no longer able to work on a regular basis. It is essentially meant to help individuals meet basic living needs and, on average, pays out $1,165 a month.
It is important to remember that SSI is a needs-based program. And while those in the program are still able to work while receiving SSDI benefits, these benefits might end if it is determined that an individual is able to fully return to work and is not longer hindered by their disability.
The SSDI process can be very complex and applicants might consider it a challenging and emotional process. Nonetheless, it is important that applicants do not get discouraged. It is important to become well informed about the process and seek assistance if there is any confusion or obstacles encountered. This will ensure the individual’s rights and interests are protected.
Source: Everydayhealth.com, “10 Myths and Facts About Social Security Disability Insurance,” Kathleen Doheny, accessed on Dec. 27, 2015