When you suffer a disabling injury or illness, your future may seem uncertain. You may be unable to continue working in your chosen profession, worry how you will financially support yourself and struggle with learning to cope with your impairment.
Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits provide many who are unable to work after a disability across Tennessee with access to the financial relief they need. However, the application process can be complicated and lengthy. Additionally, the Social Security Administration (SSA) rejects many first-time applications, often due to overlooked errors in the application. What are some common mistakes applicants should avoid?
Submitting your application too early
It can be easy to become eager to gain access to the benefits you need. However, to be eligible, your disability must prevent you from performing your job duties for at least 12 months. This does not mean that you cannot work at all for 12 months. In 2019, the SSA requirements state that to remain eligible while working in some capacity, you cannot earn more than $1,220 per month.
Providing insufficient medical evidence
Submitting comprehensive medical proof is one of the most important components of your application. According to the SSA, this evidence should indicate:
- The nature and full extent of your condition or impairment
- How long the condition has affected you
- Whether you can still complete both physical and mental aspects of your job
You may submit medical evidence from all treating physicians of your condition, caregivers, family members, employers and more. Provide consistent, detailed information to show a complete picture of the severity of your impairment. Consult the SSA’s Blue Book to ensure your condition is on the list of impairments.
Failing to attempt to properly treat your condition
In determining the severity of your condition, the SSA must observe that you have exhausted your options to effectively treat it and recover. If it is clear that you have not followed doctor’s orders or stopped going to the doctor altogether, it may result in the rejection of your application.
Failing to appeal a denied claim
It can be disheartening and frustrating to learn that the SSA denied your application. However, work with an attorney to begin the appeals process, whether this includes submitting more comprehensive medical proof, further evidence of your treatment attempts and more. You have options to gain access to the financial relief you need, even after a denial.