For individuals in Pennsylvania who are living with a disability, earning money can be a concern. The person’s disability can make it difficult or impossible for the person to work. With an inability to work, individuals may not have the income they need to support themselves. In these situations, many individuals may hope to rely on Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.
However, people need to understand that it is not easy to apply or be approved for SSDI benefits. In fact, between 2004 and 2013, only 36 percent of applicants were approved for SSDI benefits. Even after appeals, only an additional two percent were approved and another 11 percent were approved after court hearings. Therefore, individuals need to know that SSDI benefits are not a given.
Given the statistics, individuals should do everything in their power to get approved for the benefits they have earned and need. There are some things that individuals can do to increase their chances of approval. First, individuals can make sure that they are applying correctly the first time they submit an application. It is important for people to have complete medical records, when filing with the Social Security Administration. Data shows that in 2013, 28 percent of claims were denied because of issues with medical evidence.
Also, individuals should follow up with the Social Security Administration to make sure that their application and medical records end up in the right hands. Individuals need to be proactive about ensuring that the right people in the SSA are reviewing the documents.
It can be difficult for individuals in Pennsylvania to fully understand how the SSDI application process works. People need to make sure they understand the process and their legal rights in order to give themselves the best chance at obtaining benefits.
Source: CNBC, “Steps to successfully apply for Social Security disability,” Kelli B. Grant, Feb. 1, 2016