The Social Security Act defines disability as “the inability to perform any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment, which is expected to result in death or which lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period.”
The disability must be shown or proven by accepted clinical and laboratory diagnostic methods and techniques. It must be evidenced by signs, symptoms and laboratory test results and findings, and not solely based on the applicant's own statements and claims. Keep reading to learn more about social security disability.
What is the Social Security Act?
The Social Security Act provides benefits to disabled citizens of Louisiana. In Title II of the Act, there are three categories of citizens who may qualify for social security benefits due to disability:
- The insured and disabled worker must not be more than 65 years old
- A person not more than 22 years old who is a dependent of a deceased and insured parent
- A disabled widow or widower, between 50 to 60 years old, and the deceased spouse was insured by the Social Security
Under the Supplemental Security Income or SSI, there are two general categories where someone who has a limited and insufficient income can get benefits and payments because of his disability:
- An adult who is 18 years old or older and is disabled
- A child below 18 years old and is disabled.
How a Disability is Determined
Disability claims should be filed first at the Disability Determination Services, a local Social Security field office in the state of Louisiana. If not approved as a disability, an appeal can be made to the Hearing Officers of the Disability Determination Service Hearing Units or to the Administrative Law Judges in the Social Security Administration's Office of Hearings and Appeals.
Applications for disability can also be done online, or through phone by calling 1-800-772-1213. The Disability Determination Services checks the applicant's medical records and sources. Should these records and sources be insufficient to make a decision, a Consultative Examination for the applicant will be scheduled and arranged.
All applications are forwarded to the Disability Determination Services Area Offices for medical determination. Once a medical decision is made and complete, the claim for disability will be routed to the Social Security Office for the last stage of processing.
Social Security Application Denials
The harsh reality is that Social Security Disability applications can be denied. The process takes three to four months. Once the decision is made, an appeal can be made within 60 days. This is where an experienced lawyer can help you make the most out of your disability claims and benefits.
Seek Legal Counsel for Your Social Security Disability Benefits
We at the Schwartz Law Firm believe that you do not deserve to have your claims for social security and retirement benefits to be put on hold, only to be denied. You have already suffered and endured enough hardships because of your disability.
Let our experienced and dedicated lawyers represent you, protect your rights, and maximize your claims and benefits. We bring you over 25 years of experience in workers' compensation, and we will help you get the benefits you truly deserve. Call us today at 504-837-2263 for your free initial consultation.