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How Do I File For Social Security Disability Benefits

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Filing For Social Security Disability Benefits In Michigan

How to Apply for Social Security Disability

There are multiple ways to file for Social Security disability in Michigan. You can file in person at a local Social Security Administration field office. Or you can telephone the SSA at 772-1213 or apply online at .

To apply for disability benefits in Michigan, you’ll need to have a significant amount of information on hand, including details about the condition that cause you to be unable to work, medical or psychiatric treatment you’ve obtained , and your past employment and earnings.

After you file your application, it will be sent to Disability Determination Services , a state-level agency under the Michigan Department of Health Services. A claims examiner at DDS will decide whether you are disabled.

Special Rules For People Who Are Blind Or Have Low Vision

We consider you to be legally blind under Social Security rules if your vision cannot be corrected to better than 20/200 in your better eye or if your visual field is 20 degrees or less, even with a corrective lens. Many people who meet the legal definition of blindness still have some sight and may be able to read large print and get around without a cane or a guide dog.

If you do not meet the legal definition of blindness, you may still qualify for disability benefits if your vision problems alone or combined with other health problems prevent you from working.

There are a number of special rules for people who are blind that recognize the severe impact of blindness on a person’s ability to work. For example, the monthly earnings limit for people who are blind is generally higher than the limit that applies to non-blind disabled workers.

In 2021, the monthly earnings limit is $2,190.

Information You Will Need

Whether you are applying online, in person, or over the phone, there is certain information you will need to provide the Social Security Administration. That information includes:

  • Date and place of birth
  • Dates of marriage and divorces
  • Names and dates of birth of children
  • U.S. military service type of duty and branch, service period dates
  • Names of Employers for the current year and the last 2 years
  • Self-employment details for current year and the last 2 years
  • Direct deposit information Routing number, account number
  • Additional contact person this should be someone who knows about your medical conditions
  • A list of all your medical conditions
  • Detailed information about your doctors and other health care professionals names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of treatment
  • Names and dosages of all medications you take and who prescribed them
  • You job history for example, what was the date your medical condition began to affect your ability to work?

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Required Documentation All Ssd Applicants Must Provide To Qualify

First, its important to note that the Social Security Administration will only accept originals for certain items. Weve noted in our documentation list below which things you can submit copies for vs. original versions only. Now, lets start with the standard, non-medical documentation you need to file along with your disability claim:

  • Your original birth certificate .
  • A 15-page form called the Adult Disability Report that details your work history, illnesses, conditions, etc.
  • Your military discharge papers if you served before 1968 . You must submit original documentation for this, not a photocopy!
  • Were you born in the United States? If not, you must submit original documentation that proves your lawful alien status or naturalized citizenship.
  • Copies of your most recent W-2 forms, self-employed income tax returns, 1099s, etc. for the past year. Note: If you havent worked in 5 years or longer, then you cannot qualify for SSD benefits.
  • If applicable, copies of your workers compensation award letters, settlement agreements, pay stubs or other related documentation. Basically, if you got a payment from anything other than a paycheck in the past year, the SSA needs to see that documentation.
  • Original documentation relating to your familys births, , deaths or divorces. This includes your childrens birth certificates, your , divorce decree and any death certificates . Remember: The SSA wont accept copies of these, so be sure to submit your original documentation.
  • Who May Be Eligible

    How do I apply for Social Security disability benefits ...

    SSDI: A worker who becomes disabled. Also, certain family members may be eligible. These family members, with some limitations not fully described below, may include:

    • The workers spouse, if the spouse is caring for their child who is younger than age 16 or who is disabled
    • The workers spouse, if the spouse is age 62 or older
    • The workers child if the child is younger than age 18. If the child is still in grade school or high school full time, the child can receive benefits up to age 19
    • The workers child who is age 18 or older, if this adult child is disabled and became disabled before age 22
    • The workers divorced spouse, if:
    • The divorced spouse is age 62 or older,
    • Was married to the worker for at least 10 years, and
    • Is not currently married.
  • The workers stepchild or grandchild, in limited circumstances.
  • SSI: U.S. citizens and certain legal immigrants who are financially needy. Also, who are at least 65 years old, blind or disabled.

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    How To Protect Or Enforce Your Rights: Appeals

    SSA denies many applications for disability benefits. Denials often occur because there was not enough medical evidence to prove a disabling problem. More than 50% of appeals are successful. If SSA denies your claim, strongly consider filing an appeal. Many people give up, wait a period of time, and reapply. In most cases, it is a better decision to file an appeal rather than to wait and to reapply. You should also consider appeals in other cases. You can appeal if you believe that SSA wrongly reduced or terminated your benefits. Also, if SSA takes wrongful actions, such as finding an overpayment or requiring a representative payee. Suppose you are already receiving benefits, and SSA sends you a notice to reduce or terminate. In that case, you may be able to keep your benefits while you appeal. You will need to act quickly to appeal, usually within ten days of receipt of the notice. Indicate on the appeal form that you wish to continue to receive your benefits during the appeal. For example, if SSA decides you are no longer disabled and sends you a notice, you may choose to keep your benefits until a judge issues a decision. There levels of the Appeal Process are as follows:

    Requests for reconsideration

    Request for an ALJ hearing

    Request for review by the appeals council

    • The ALJ made an error of law,
    • His decision was not supported by substantial evidence, or
    • There was an abuse of discretion.

    Lawsuits in U.S. District Court

    The judge can:

    How to file an appeal with SSA

    How Long Does It Take To Wait For An Answer After You File For Social Security Disability Benefits

    One of the most challenging aspects of being denied the first time you apply for Social Security Disability benefits is waiting for a hearing. Waiting to have your hearing formally scheduled can stretch out the process of receiving SSDI benefits for one year or longer. Although Congress is currently evaluating potential reforms that could streamline this process, the issue has not yet been fully addressed.

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    The Benefits Of Getting Legal Representation

    You can have an attorney or advocate represent your case at any stage of the process. Because the application process is so overwhelming and confusing for many applicants, you may want to speak with a disability attorney before even applying.

    Having a the aid of an advocate or attorney who practices Social Security Disability law can go a long way in increasing the chances of your claims approval. An attorney or advocate can help you in numerous ways, from ensuring your application was filled out correctly, to submitting new medical evidence to the SSA, to defending your claim in court if needed.

    Finally, if youre worried about affording an attorney, you should know that an attorney or advocate is not paid unless you win your claim. If you win your Social Security disability claim and you are entitled to back pay, an attorney could receive 25% of your back pay, or $6,000, whichever is less. You will never need to pay an attorney out of pocket, nor will your monthly benefits be affected by working with an attorney.

    What Do I Need To Know Before Filing My First Claim

    How do I File a Social Security Disability Application.

    Scheduling a consultation with an experienced social security disability benefits attorney can greatly increases your understanding of the overall process and your confidence in approaching the claim. To improve your chances of having a successful claim the first time around, ensure that you have gathered as many medical records as possible prior to filing your claim.

    It can take some time to do this as you will need to gather medical records from numerous different facilities, but you want to ensure that the Social Security Administration has a comprehensive picture of your condition from the beginning. Claims examiners are looking for indications that you have been receiving medical care for your condition over time on a regular basis and also want to understand the severity of your condition and how it has impaired your abilities to work.

    Your physicianâs opinions about limitations can make or break your claim, so it is important to be able to establish a comprehensive pattern and track record of seeking out treatment and consistent insight from your doctors indicating that you have a condition severe enough to warrant disability benefits.

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    Information About Family Members

    • Social Security numbers and proof of age for each family member who may qualify for benefits and
    • Proof of marriage, if your spouse is applying for benefits, as well as dates of prior marriages, if applicable.

    If you don’t have all the documents you need, don’t delay filing for benefits. We will help you get the information you need.

    Report The Death Of A Social Security Or Medicare Beneficiary

    You must report the death of a family member receiving Social Security or Medicare benefits. The Social Security Administration processes death reports for both. Find out how you can report a death and how to cancel benefit payments. In addition to canceling SSA and Medicare benefits, find out what other benefits and accounts you should cancel.

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    Applying For Disability Benefits

    You can call toll free 772-1213 to make an appointment to apply at your local Social Security office. You may apply for SSDI benefits online. You can also start an SSI application online. However, you will need to go into a Social Security office to complete the application. When you apply, you will need to give SSA information about:

    • Your medical conditions and treatment,
    • How your medical conditions affect your ability to function,
    • Information about your past work, and
    • Information about your education.

    Other Ways You Can Apply

    How Do I Know If I Qualify for Social Security Disability ...

    Apply With Your Local Office

    You can do most of your business with Social Security online. If you cannot use these online services, your local Social Security office can help you apply. Although our offices are closed to the public, employees from those offices are assisting people by telephone. You can find the phone number for your local office by using our Office Locator and looking under Social Security Office Information. The toll-free Office number is your local office.

    Apply By Phone

    If You Do Not Live in the U.S. Or One of Its Territories

    Contact the if you live outside the U.S. or a U.S. territory and wish to apply for retirement benefits.

    Mailing Your Documents

    If you mail any documents to us, you must include the Social Security number so that we can match them with the correct application. Do not write anything on the original documents. Please write the Social Security number on a separate sheet of paper and include it in the mailing envelope along with the documents.

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    How Do You File For Social Security Disability Benefits

    by Chloe Chew | Feb 4, 2020 | SSD Benefits

    The most common question we are asked is, How do you file for disability? If you are looking for information about how to begin your Social Security Disability claim, you have come to the right place.

    When you apply for disability benefits with the help of Crest SSD, we take the difficulty and confusion out of the application process by applying on your behalf!

    We know the necessary information and tips to ensure that the application process goes smoothly. If you are looking for a stress-free approach to applying for Social Security disability benefits,

    If you are seeking more information about how to file for disability benefits, keep reading for guidance on the grueling application process.

    Types Of Disability Benefits

    Regardless of the cause of your disabling condition, the federal Social Security Disability Program was enacted to provide you with a critical safety net in your time of need. There are two types of disability benefits:

  • Social Security Disability Insurance benefits which are based upon an individuals work record and,
  • Supplemental Security Income benefits which are income-based benefits for which no work history is required in order to apply and can be paid to disabled adults and children.
  • Whats the difference between SSD and SSI? Read our previous blog that discussed the difference between the two disability programs.

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    If Your Application Is Denied

    After we review your application and the information you provided, we may decide you do not meet the qualifications for disability benefits.

    If you disagree with our decision, you have the right to ask us to look at your application again. The notice you receive from us that says you don’t qualify will explain how to appeal our decision and the time period in which you must make the request.

    If we decide you don’t qualify:

    • Because you are not disabled under our rules, you can appeal our decision online.

      The online disability report will ask you for updated information about your medical condition and any treatment, tests, or doctor visits since we made our decision.

    What Happens If The Adult Child Gets Married

    Hesitant to file for Social Security Disability Benefits?

    If he or she receives benefits as a disabled “adult child,” the benefits generally end if he or she gets married. However, some marriages are considered protected.

    The rules vary depending on the situation. Contact a Social Security representative at 1-800-772-1213 to find out if the benefits can continue.


    To speed up the application process, complete an Adult Disability Report and have it available at the time of your appointment.

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    How Do I File For Social Security Disability

    If you have a medical or psychological condition and are not able to work because of it, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. If youre thinking of applying for Social Security Disability benefits, you may file online at by phone, by mail, or by visiting the nearest Social Security office. In some situations, the Ritchie Law Firm may be able to assist you with filing your claim.

    How To File Social Security Disability Claims

    You may apply for SSD benefits online provided you are at least 18 years of age, do not currently receive Social Security benefits, and have not had an application denied within the past 60 days. If you do not meet the requirements to file online or wish to use an alternate method, you may file over the phone, through the mail, or in person at a local Social Security Administration field office.

    Applications for SSI benefits for children younger than 18 years of age is a two-step process. First, you must complete a Child Disability Report, which gathers information about the disability and what effect it has on the ability of the child to function. The report is completed online along with consent allowing your childâs medical professionals to share information about the disability. Our SSI lawyer can assist you with an application on behalf of a child.

    Following submission of the online Child Disability Report, someone from Social Security will contact you within three to five days to go over it. The representation also will discuss income and resources with you to determine if they meet the limits to qualify for SSI.

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    What Qualifies As Disabled Under The Ssd Definition

    Social Security uses the same strict definition of disability for both the SSI and SSDI programs when evaluating applications submitted by adults. A determination that you have a qualifying disability requires that you meet each of the following requirements:

    • Be unable to engage in substantial gainful activity or SGA.
    • The inability to engage in SGA must be caused by a medically determinable physical or mental impairment or impairments.
    • The impairments must last or be expected to last for at least 12 consecutive months or be expected to cause death.

    Children younger than 18 years of age who apply for benefits through SSI must meet a different definition for the SSA to approve their application for SSD based on a disability. Instead of using SGA as the basis for the evaluation, a disabled child must have a medically determinable physical or mental impairment or impairments causing marked and severe functional limitation limitations that must have lasted or be expected to last for at least 12 consecutive months.

    An SSDI lawyer from our office may have options for individuals with vision problems who may not meet the blindness definition. Impaired vision along with other health issues may allow you to qualify for SSDI as disabled.

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