Category: Disability Insurance Benefits

Why have a Lawyer help with your Social Security Disability Claims?

Being found disabled has never been easy. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has 4 stages in the application process for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

The 4 Stages are: 

  1.  Filing an Application for Social Security Disability Benefits/Supplemental Security Income;
  2.  If denied you then file a Request for Reconsideration;
  3. If your Request for Reconsideration is denied  you file a Request for Hearing with an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ); and
  4. If you receive an unfavorable decision from an ALJ you may appeal the unfavorable decision with the Appeals Council (AC).

Number of applicants winning their disability is decreasing:

Over the years less and less applicants filing for disability have received disability at the Hearing level in front of an ALJ (after step 3). And even fewer have received disability benefits prior to this stage. The average approval rate has dropped to around 36% nationally.  In the past the approval rate has been above 50% at the hearing level. Unfortunately approval rate appears to be continuing to decrease. The trend is less and less people are being approved for disability benefits.

Why you need an Attorney:

The lesson to be learned is if you are seeking disability benefits from the SSA, you need all the help you can get. After an initial denial, it is wise to engage the services of an attorney who practices Social Security Disability law. This is not a guarantee of success, but it does increase the odds. Once you receive a denial you have a strict time frame to file an appeal. An experienced attorney will help guide you through the appeals process and ensure your medical record is updated. As each Social Security Hearing Office is different, a local attorney will have a feel for the various local judges and may have some additional insight that is helpful.

If you have been denied Social Security Disability, call the trusted lawyers at Perry Law Office.

 

WHAT IS A WINDFALL OFFSET IN SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY?

Many times people who file for disability with the Social Security Administration (SSA) have claims for both Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Also, many times, the person who is found disabled is really only entitled to, at most, five months of past due SSI benefits. Yet, SSA will start off paying the person many more months of SSI to which they are not really entitled. When SSA tries to figure what you are owed in past due DIB, they reduce that amount by what you have been overpaid in SSI. This is called the windfall offset.

Sounds simple enough doesn’t it? But it is not. SSA withholds the past due DIB until the offset is calculated. In about a twenty-one percent (21%) of the time it is not calculated at all and another thirty-one percent (31%) of the time it is not done in a timely manner. Two percent (2%) of the time it is done incorrectly. Only about forty-five percent (45%) of the time are things done properly. This can be very confusing to individuals receiving disability benefits. It can also make it difficult for the disabled person to receive all past due benefits to which they are entitled.

At Perry Law Office, after we help a person obtain a favorable decision that they are disabled, we follow their claim in an effort to see that all past due benefits are properly paid.

 

What is a Windfall Offset in Social Security Disability?

Many times people who file for disability with the Social Security Administration (SSA) have claims for both Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Also, many times, the person who is found disabled is really only entitled to, at most, five months of past due SSI benefits. Yet, SSA will start off with paying the person many more months of SSI to which they are not really entitled. When SSA tries to figure what you are owed in past due DIB, they reduce that amount by what you have been overpaid in SSI. This is called the windfall offset. Sounds simple enough doesn’t it? But it is not. SSA withholds the past due DIB until the offset is calculated. In about a twenty-one percent (21%) of the time it is not calculated at all and another thirty-one percent (31%) of the time it is not done in a timely manner. Two percent (2%) of the time it is done incorrectly. Only about forty-five percent (45%) of the time are things done properly. This can be very confusing to individuals receiving disability benefits. It can also make it difficult for the disabled person to receive all past due benefits to which they are entitled. At Perry Law Office, after we help a person obtain a favorable decision that they are disabled, we follow their claim in an effort to see that all past due benefits are properly paid.