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Many first-time applicants for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are turned down, but this does not always mean that you are not an eligible candidate. If you were initially denied benefits, we recommend that you contact am experienced lawyer to help in pursuing approval for the disability benefits you need.

At Jay Trucks and Associates has been representing residents in Lansing and other cities across Michigan. We have a proven track record of recovering millions in compensation for our clients in over 30 years. We are available to answer your legal questions and fully guide you through the SSD application process.

A Lansing Social Security Disability attorney from our firm is prepared to assess your potential claim in a completely free initial consultation. There are no upfront charges if we represent you, and we do not get paid our fees unless we successfully obtain benefits for you.

No Upfront Fees. Ph: (800) 762-8623

Who May Be Eligible For Disability Benefits?

Eligibility requirements set forth by the Social Security Administration (SSA) are very specific. To qualify, you must be able to provide evidence of your medical condition, prior work history and other guidelines for defining an individual as disabled, such as:

  • A qualifying condition that meets the SSA’s definition of physical and/or mental impairment
  • You must not be able to perform your former job duties or any other work
  • Your condition must have a prognosis or expectation of lasting at least one year and/or end in death
  • Current income you receive does exceed Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) limits

Minor applicants, age 18 years or less, may be eligible for disability benefits if they have a qualifying severely limiting condition according to SSA childhood impairment guidelines.

Learn whether you may qualify for disability benefits by contacting one of our SSD lawyers in Lansing.

Free Consultation. No obligations involved. (800) 762-8623

SSD Benefits Programs Overview

The SSA manages multiple federally funded programs that are intended to help individuals seeking disability benefits. Each program has its own eligibility requirements, which confuses many first-time applicants. Programs in existence include:

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

SSDI benefits are provided to eligible applicants, and in some cases, family members. Qualifying applicants will have:

  • A prior work history with a minimum of 40 credits
  • Actively worked five consecutive years of the last ten

Applicants seeking additional benefits for family members must have been working as specified and also paid taxes on Social Security benefits.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

This is a benefits program designed for people who have limited earnings and assets, and who are also blind, elderly, or suffer from other qualifying disabilities. Having a prior work history is not a requirement for this program. However other eligibility requirements do include:

  • Having no more than $2,000 in financial assets, if a single applicant
  • Financial assets as a couple that do not exceed $3,000
  • The ability to prove that the diagnosed impairment or disability prevents the individual applicant or couple from being able to work

Disabled Widow and Widower Benefits

Widows and widowers of a spouse who had been receiving Social Security benefits may qualify for these benefits if they are between 50 and 60 years of age and can present the following documentation:

  • Spouse’s death certificate
  • Valid marriage certificate
  • Current tax forms

Disabled Adult Child Benefits

Minor children who suffered a disabling disease or medical condition before reaching 22 years may qualify for disabled adult child benefits, even if they have never worked, under the following conditions:

  • The minor child meets SSA criteria for a physical disability
  • The minor child is not making a substantial income, according to the SSA guidelines
  • One or both parents are deceased
  • One or both parents have retired and are being paid retirement benefits
  • One or both parents qualify for and are receiving disability benefits

How Do I Apply For Benefits in Michigan?

You may apply for benefits in multiple, convenient ways in Michigan:

  • Applying online
  • Over the phone, by calling the toll-free number at the SSA: 1-800-772-1213
  • Visiting the Lansing SSA office in person at: 5210 Perry Robinson, Lansing, MI 48911

Before you begin the application process, there are some documents and forms you will need to obtain:

  • Your last W-2 form
  • Social Security Number
  • Proof of age
  • Carefully documented summary of your prior work history
  • All pertinent medical records and diagnostic tests from treating physicians
  • Current prescription medications
  • Marriage certificate, if your spouse is also applying
  • Valid ID proving the age of any other family member applying with you
  • Contact information from your treating physicians and other medical professionals responsible for your care management

Prior to applying for benefits, we recommend that you contact one of our qualified Lansing Social Security Disability lawyers. We are prepared to help you with your application to ensure that:

  • Your application is complete and accurate
  • All necessary documents accompany your application
  • You have sufficient medical evidence, per the SSA’s requirements

Contact our firm to get started on your claim. (800) 762-8623

Why Many First-Time Applicants May Be Denied

It is not uncommon for applicants to be denied benefits initially, even if they may meet all of the requirements. This is why we recommend seeking legal help from a licensed attorney.

Our lawyers handle claims like these on a regular basis and are very familiar with the process. While we cannot guarantee the outcome, we are ready to help ensure that you have the proper documentation and medical evidence to strengthen your chances for approval.

Applications may initially be denied because the applicant:

What Can I Do If My Benefits Claim Was Denied?

If your claim was already denied, it is important that you act quickly to appeal this decision. This is another way that a Lansing Social Security Disability attorney from our firm may be able to help. We are prepared to review your claim and help you proceed with the four levels of appeal, which includes:

Pursuing SSD benefits and any necessary appeals is a complicated process. Applicants can benefit greatly from having an experienced attorney who understands the laws, all documentation that may be required, and who will fight for your legal rights.

Do not delay pursuing the benefits you need. Contact our legal team at (800) 762-8623

Can Military Veterans Qualify For Social Security Disability?

A military veteran who is already receiving assistance through the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) may still apply for SSA benefits. However, there is no guarantee a veteran will qualify for disability on the basis they met the VA’s eligibility requirements for disability. This is because the VA’s requirements are different and a veteran may qualify for benefits with only a moderate disability, while the SSD’s requirements are more stringent.

If you are a military veteran and you suffered a disabling injury or medical condition during your on or after October 1, 2001, you will likely qualify to apply under the SSA’s accelerated application process.

What is the Ticket to Work Program?

The Ticket to Work program helps individuals with certain types of disabilities who may be able to return to some type of work to reach financial independence. While working under this program, these individuals can continue to earn income while simultaneously receiving SSD benefits. Participants in this program are not subjected to continuing disability reviews by the SSA. Only applicants who have not already received a continuing disability review are eligible for this program.

How Long Will it Take Before I Receive My Benefits?

If you qualify for benefits and your application is approved, you should begin receiving your checks within 30 to 60 days of the date of your approval notice. If, after 90 days, you have not received your first benefits check, contact your SSD lawyer to find out what may be causing the delay.

Contact Our Lansing Social Security Disability Lawyers

Having an experienced SSD lawyer on your side can help to ensure your application is properly submitted the first time. If your claim was already denied, you are under a time crunch of just 60 days to get it right. We are prepared to guide you through the entire process and fight to help you get the benefits you need.

Advocating for the residents of Michigan is what our firm is about. We have a proven track record of more than $500 million in compensation that we have recovered for our clients.

There is no risk to you, because the initial consultation is completely free, and if we represent you, you pay us no money for our services unless we first obtain benefits for you.

Jay Trucks and Associates. We are here to help. (800) 762-8623

Has your Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits application been denied?

Contacting an SSD lawyer can be an important step as you consider your options moving forward. The attorneys at our firm have successfully represented thousands of clients while obtaining over $500,000,000 in compensation.

Contact Jay Trucks and Associates today to set up a free, no-obligation consultation with a Grand Rapids Social Security Disability attorney. There are no upfront fees involved and we do not receive payment unless we recover compensation for you.

No Upfront Fees – Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Do I Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits?

To qualify for SSD benefits, your situation must meet certain criteria, which are covered on the Social Security Administration (SSA) website. The SSA considers a person disabled if they:

Children under the age of 18 may qualify for SSD benefits if they suffer from a physical or mental condition that seriously limits their ability to take part in certain activities.

There are many reasons why you may have not been able to obtain disability benefits. Even though you may have a disability listed on the SSA website, maybe you did not have enough medical evidence.

Let our Grand Rapids Social Security Disability lawyers learn more about your claim in a complimentary consultation. Our lawyers have extensive knowledge of the rules for SSD benefits and we are prepared to guide you through the application or appeal process.

Social Security Benefit Types

There are several different types of SSD benefit programs you may be able to apply for, based on income, assets, age and status as a widow or widower.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

These benefits are for people who have sustained a serious injury or illness that has resulted in severe physical and/or mental limitations. They were working and are no longer able because of their disability.

Usually, applicants must have at least 40 work credits and must have worked in five of the last 10 years. However, the number of work credits is based on your age. A work credit equates to a certain of money you earned in a year. For example, in 2020, if you earned at least $1,410 in wages, you have one work credit for that year. You can earn up to four work credits each year.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Applicants who have little to no work history or assets may qualify for SSI benefits. You must have a qualifying disability and less than $2000 in total assets. If you are a couple applying together, the asset limitation is $3,000.

It can be difficult to determine what is counted as an asset without the help of a knowledgeable lawyer SSD lawyer. Some valuables you own may not count against your asset limits.

Disabled Widow’s and Widower’s Benefits

Widows and widowers may be able to obtain these benefits if they are 50 years of age and have a qualifying disability. Otherwise, you must be over the age of 60 and have lost your spouse within the past seven years. Some important documents you must present to SSA include:

Disabled Adult Child Benefits

According to the SSA, a disabled adult child is over the age of 18, unmarried and has a qualifying disabling condition, which began before he or she reached the age of 22. There must be one parent already receiving SSD benefits or a parent who passed away while receiving benefits. The deceased parent must have paid into the Social Security system for a long enough time.

If you are unsure about which benefits you may qualify for, give us a call today. If you have a viable claim, the Grand Rapids SSD attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates are prepared to guide you through the process.

Information Needed for the Application Process

Before you start the application process for SSA benefits, we suggest gathering some important documentation, including:

Because the SSA approval process can take up to five months, you should apply for benefits as soon as you can. There are three different ways you can apply for SSD benefits, including:

If you are having trouble with the SSA application process, feel free to contact a Grand Rapids Social Security Disability attorney at Jay Trucks & Associates for a free review of your claim. We aim to help injury victims get the benefits they may need for a healthy recovery.

Call us at (800) 762-8623 today to learn more about applying for Social Security Disability benefits.

Why Was my Application Denied?

Having your application denied does not always mean you are ineligible for SSD benefits. Often times, it helps to have an experienced SSD lawyer review your claim to look for any missing or incorrect information. Sometimes a lawyer can include additional evidence that may help strengthen your claim.

Some common reasons why some SSD applications may get denied include:

  • Lack of work credits
  • Lack of medical evidence
  • Income or assets exceed the allowable limit
  • Prior denial
  • Failure to cooperate
  • Failure to follow medical treatment schedule
  • Disability will not last at least one year

Some claims are denied because the applicant is disabled due to an alcohol or drug addiction. However, there is an important distinction to be made: if you are disabled and have an addiction, your claim may still be approved. It is important to be truthful and forthcoming about the addiction, as it may improve your chances of being approved for benefits.

If your SSD application was denied, call (800) 762-8623 to schedule a free consultation with a trusted Grand Rapids Social Security Disability attorney at Jay Trucks and Associates.

Appealing a Denied Social Security Disability Claim

If your SSD claim was denied or you are unhappy with the amount of compensation you are receiving, you can file an appeal. However, you only have 60 days to do so, and the appeals process can be lengthy and complex, which is why we recommend letting a qualified attorney review your claim.

These are the four different levels to the appeals process:

The Grand Rapids Social Security Disability lawyers at Jay Trucks and Associates understand that the SSD appeals process may not be easy to understand and some folks may not be able to handle the process on their own, which is why we are here. If you have a valid claim, our lawyers are prepared to manage the appeals process on your behalf.

When Should I Start Receiving Benefits?

If you receive an approval for benefits, you should receive the first payment within one to two months. Backpay may take longer – backpay is for the period between when you applied and were approved.

If more than three months pass without receiving a check, you should call an attorney so he or she can ask the SSA about the situation. Our attorneys understand how important it is to you and your family to receive this compensation.

Get in Contact with a Grand Rapids Social Security Disability Lawyer Today

Whether it is your first time applying or you plan to appeal a denied claim, our lawyers may be able to assist you in seeking benefits. We have detailed knowledge of the process involved in applying for benefits and are prepared to guide you every step of the way, if you have a valid claim.

Jay Trucks and Associates accepts Social Security Disability claims on a contingency fee basis – meaning we do not charge any upfront fees and you will not be billed any attorney’s fees unless we obtain benefits for you.

Reach us by phone, night or day: (800) 762-8623.

Applying for Social Security Disability can be tedious and overwhelming. Many applicants are turned down at first, often for lack of medical evidence or because they do not meet income restrictions. If this has happened to you, working with an experienced lawyer may help improve your chances of getting approved.

I had Jay Trucks & Associates handle both a Social Security Disability case and a worker’s comp case. Both cases were won, and I am very grateful to have had them to represent me…
– BM

For more than 30 years, Jay Trucks & Associates has been providing legal counsel to residents in Flint and across the state of Michigan, helping many of our clients to obtain disability benefits and/or having then reinstated where eligible. We are prepared to guide you through the application process or help you appeal a denied disability claim to obtain the benefits you need.

A Flint Social Security Disability attorney is standing by to review your claim in a free consultation. There is no risk in calling us and no obligation to hire us. We only get paid if we help you obtain compensation.

Call us anytime 24/7 at (800) 762-8623.

Eligibility Requirements for Disability Benefits

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has a strict definition of a disability. To be eligible for benefits, you must prove your medical condition, work history and/or assets satisfy the guidelines set forth by the SSA. An individual may be deemed disabled if he or she:

Children under age 18 may be considered disabled if the impairment creates severe functional limitations and is expected to result in death or last for no less than one year.

If you are unsure if you qualify, we recommend reaching out to an SSD lawyer from our firm.

Free Consultation. No upfront fees. (800) 762-8623.

Overview of Social Security Disability Programs

There are several disability programs available to applicants seeking benefits. These programs are federally funded and administered by the SSA. The program you may be eligible for will depend on several factors.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

SSDI helps pays benefits to individuals who have a work history and become disabled. You must have enough work credits – usually at least 40 – and have worked for no less than five out of the last 10 years before becoming disabled and unable to work. These benefits may also available to certain family members if you worked for a period of time and were paying taxes on your Social Security benefits.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

SSI helps pays benefits to disabled, blind or elderly individuals who have limited income and few assets. You must have less than $2,000 in assets as a single person or $3,000 as a couple. You do not need to have a work history to qualify, but you must be able to show that your impairment prevents you from working.

Disabled Widow and Widower Benefits

These benefits provide financial assistance to widows and widowers between 50 to 60 years of age after the death of a spouse receiving Social Security Disability. Certain documentation is required, including the death certificate, Social Security numbers, birth certificate, the marriage certificate and most recent tax forms filed.

Disabled Adult Child Benefits

A child who becomes disabled before 22 years of age may be able to obtain disabled adult child benefits if a parent has either passed, started receiving retirement or was obtaining disability benefits.

Applying for Disability Benefits in Michigan

If you live in Michigan and are unable to work because of an impairment lasting at least one year, there are three ways to apply for disability benefits:

You will need to gather information before applying, including:

We recommend applying for disability benefits as soon as you become impaired. It takes the SSA generally three to five months to review your claim and make a decision. However, the process can take longer if you delay in responding to information and document requests.

Our Flint Social Security Disability attorneys are here to help compile the documents and information necessary for your application. You may even be eligible for additional monthly benefits from the state.

We have a proven track record recovering millions in compensation on behalf of our clients.

Read some reviews from our satisfied clients.

Disability Benefits for Injured Veterans

You may qualify for disability benefits on top of any benefits you are receiving from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). However, it is important to note these are separate programs with different eligibility requirements.

If you qualify for SSD benefits, you may qualify for veterans benefits if you can prove your disability is service connected. However, it is possible to be eligible for VA benefits while being ineligible for SSD benefits. Generally, you need a VA disability rating of 70 percent or higher to qualify for SSD benefits.

The SSA has an accelerated application process for veterans who became disabled on active duty on Oct. 1, 2001 or later.

How We Could Assist with Your Application

At Jay Trucks & Associates, we have extensive knowledge of disability claims and the reasons why the SSA may deny an applicant. Although the reasons for a denial vary from claim to claim, some of the most common reasons include:

Lack of Solid Medical Evidence

You must be able to prove that you are unable to work because of an impairment lasting at least one year. Solid medical evidence (i.e. medical records and doctor’s notes) could help show that your disabling condition has interfered with your ability to work. Do not assume that being sent for a medical exam by the SSA is enough to prove your disability.

Previous Claim Denials

Many people also assume that filing a new disability claim instead of appealing a denied application will improve their chances of approval. This is certainly not the case. If an SSD representative sees that you have already been previously denied benefits, he or she will most likely deny your claim again. Going through the appeals process with a Flint Social Security Disability attorney is usually preferable to simply applying again.

Income Exceeds Limitations

If you earn more than a certain amount per month, you may be denied SSI benefits. This limitation is known as the substantial gainful activity limit. Your income does not apply for SSDI. 2020 applicants can still work part-time and earn money during the claims process, but they can earn no more than $1,260 or $2,110 for non-blind applicants.

Failure to Follow Treatment

Not following the treatment prescribed by your doctor, such as taking medication, using assistive devices or keeping medical appointments, could impact your ability to obtain benefits. Claim examiners will not be able to properly determine whether your impairment is what is preventing you from working.

Lack of Cooperation With the SSA

It is in your best interest to cooperate with the SSA through the claims process. Not remaining in contact with the person handling your application, not submitting requested documentation, or failing to show up to a scheduled medical exam may result in a denied claim.

Our legal team understands what it takes to get approved for benefits. Schedule a free consultation to learn about your legal options.

There is no risk in calling us. (800) 762-8623.

Ticket to Work Program

As noted above, you can still work and receive disability benefits. That is part of the reason why the SSA has something called the Ticket to Work program. If you participate in this program, you can work and the SSA is prohibited from conducting a continuing review of your eligibility for benefits, if you meet your timely progress reports.

What to Do Next If a Disability Claim Is Denied

If the SSA sent you a letter denying your request for disability benefits, you may be able to appeal it. You will have to prepare a written appeal 60 days from the date you received the decision letter. A qualified Flint Social Security Disability lawyer from our firm is prepared to help guide you through the four levels of appeal:

The appeals process can be complicated. If you have already applied for disability benefits and been turned down, our firm is ready to review your situation and file an appeal on your behalf.

If My Claim is Approved, When Will I Receive Benefits?

Usually, applicants receive their first check within 30 to 60 days of the approval of their application. Backpay may take longer though – this is compensation between the time you applied and the approval of your application.

It is a good idea to call your lawyer if you have not received a check within 90 days of your application being approved.

Consult with Our Flint Social Security Disability Attorneys

Our attorneys at Jay Trucks & Associates have many years of legal experience representing residents of Flint and many other cities across the state. We know how to collect the evidence necessary to build a strong decide on your behalf as we pursue disability benefits.

Our consultations and legal services are free of charge. You only pay us at the end of the claims or appeals process if we help you get approved. We are available to take your call or you can send an online request.

Contact our legal team today at (800) 762-8623.

The Social Security Disability attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates understand the many struggles individuals and families face when they are unable to work because of a disability. We are committed to helping those with qualifying disabilities to obtain the benefits they are eligible to receive and have extensive knowledge about the entire process of pursuing disability compensation.

… I decided to hire them again for my Social Security Disability case. I received a favorable outcome…
– T. Coty

If you had a claim that was denied, we may be able to help gather additional evidence of your disability and file an appeal on your behalf.

Contact us anytime 24/7 to set up a free review of your claim. The initial consultation puts no obligation on you to hire us. If you do, there will be no legal fees unless you receive compensation.

Free Consultation. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Qualifications for Social Security Disability Benefits

The Social Security Administration (SSA) requires applicants to meet certain criteria:

If you believe your condition meets the criteria above, you should strongly consider meeting with our experienced attorneys to determine whether you may be eligible. Even legitimate applications are denied, so you may still be eligible even if you have already been denied.

Social Security Disability Benefit Programs

There are four main programs that award disability benefits. You can discuss these programs with our licensed lawyers in a free consultation.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

These benefits are for individuals who are no longer able to work because of their disability. Generally, you must have been employed for at least five of the last 10 years (does not have to be consecutive years) to qualify for these benefits.

You also need to have earned a certain number of work credits based on your age. One work credit is equal to $1,410 in wages in 2020.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Children and adults who are unable to work because of their disability and have little to no work history, and minimal assets, may qualify for these benefits. Individuals can have no more than $2,000 in assets. Couples cannot exceed $3,000 in assets.

However, the SSA has numerous rules on things that are excluded when tallying up your assets. It is important to talk to a licensed attorney to determine if your assets may disqualify you from SSI benefits.

Disabled Widow and Widower Benefits

If you are over the age of 60 and lost your spouse within the last seven years, you may be eligible to receive these benefits. However, if you have a qualifying disability, you may be able to receive these benefits when you turn 50. You must provide the SSA with your spouse’s birth and death certificates, your most recent tax return and your social security numbers.

Disabled Adult Child Benefits

These benefits were created to help individuals between 18 and 22 who do not earn more than the SGA limit. Applicants must have a medical condition that severely limits their ability to take part in everyday activities. Parents of the disabled must qualify for disability benefits or, if they are deceased, they must have contributed to Social Security for enough time.

If you are unsure whether you qualify for any of the programs above, you can ask our Clare Social Security Disability lawyers in a free consultation.

Call today to schedule your free consultation with a Clare Social Security Disability lawyer. (800) 762-8623

Documents You Need to Complete an Application

It is important to ensure you have all the documentation required before applying for SSD benefits:

  • Social Security card
  • Birth certificate
  • Proof of citizenship
  • W2 or latest tax return
  • Documentation of your work history
  • Marriage certificate (if your spouse is applying with you)
  • List of prescribed medications and dosage requirements
  • Medical records related to your disability (including names, addresses and phone numbers of health care facilities you visited and when, etc.)

There are three different ways to apply for SSD benefits. You can apply online at the SSA website, call 1-800-772-1213 or you can visit a local Social Security office and apply in person.

If you are having trouble gathering documents or are unsure if you have a strong enough case, feel free to contact the experienced legal professionals at Jay Trucks and Associates.

Common Reasons Why Applications May be Denied

There are various reasons the SSA may deny your claim and our lawyers are very familiar with them. If you hire us to help you apply or appeal a denied claim, we are prepared to help build a strong case for why you should be awarded benefits and work to prevent a denial for one of the reasons below.

If you or a loved one had a claim denied by the SSA, contact one of our Clare Social Security Disability lawyers at Jay Trucks and Associates for a free review of your claim.

Our team is available to take your call anytime, 24-7. Ph: (800) 762-8623

The SSA Appeal Process

If your SSD claim was denied, it is important to contact an experienced attorney immediately because you only have 60 days to file an appeal. There are four steps in the appeals process:

Request for Reconsideration

Another claims examiner will review your application and consider any new evidence or information supplied by you or your lawyer. You should receive a decision within two to three months. It is better to take this step than to simply file another application because it will likely be denied. A claims examiner will see that another application was filed and rejected.

Request for a Hearing by an Administrative Law Judge

If your application is not approved, you can ask to have your case reviewed by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). You may be asked to provide additional evidence of your disability, such as medical documentation. Witnesses may also be called at the hearing.

Our lawyers can help you prepare to answer questions at the hearing and gather new evidence to bolster your application.

You should receive a written decision from the judge within 30 days of the hearing.

Appeals Council Review

If the ALJ does not approve your claim, you may request to have it reviewed by the SSA’s Appeals Council. If the Appeals Council decides to review your claim, it will decide whether to uphold or overturn the judge’s decision. They may also refer your claim to another ALJ for review.

Federal Court Review

Your last chance for appealing your claim is to file a lawsuit with the federal district court. A federal judge will review the evidence that you have already submitted. You cannot submit any new evidence.

The Clare Social Security Disability attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates are prepared to guide you through each step of your appeal, allowing you to focus on your medical treatment.

How Long Before I Start to Receive Payments?

Although waiting times may vary, you should receive your first payment within 30 to 60 days after your SSD benefits are approved. However, it may take longer to receive any backpay, which covers the time between approval and the filing of your application.

If you have not received any payments within 90 days of receiving approval from the SSA, you may want to contact your attorney. Our attorneys understand that some families could be suffering financially without the help of these benefits.

Schedule Your Free Consultation with a Clare Social Security Lawyer Today

If you or a loved one is having trouble recovering Social Security Disability benefits, contact Jay Trucks & Associates today to schedule a free consultation and find out if we may be able to assist you.

Our lawyers have been helping Michigan residents and their families for more than three decades. Our firm has handled more than 1,000 cases, recovering millions on behalf of our clients.

You can come to our office at 600 Pine Street, just 20 minutes from the U.S. Social Security Administration Office in Mt. Pleasant.

You can also contact us by phone to schedule a free review of your claim. You will not be obligated to let us represent you. There are no upfront or hidden costs and you do not pay us unless we win.

Call Jay Trucks & Associates today at (800) 762-8623 or you can fill out our free online form.

If your Social Security Disability (SSD) application was denied or you have questions about disability benefits, it is important to talk to a licensed attorney. The legal team at Jay Trucks and Associates has extensive knowledge about eligibility for benefits, filing an appeal for a denied application, the different programs for applicants and common reasons why applications are denied. We can answer your questions in a free consultation and are prepared to help you through the process at no upfront cost.

Over more than 30 years of representing Michigan residents, we have an established track record of recovering compensation for our clients. We understand how important disability benefits are for those who cannot work to support themselves and their families.

There is no obligation with your free consultation, so there is no risk to you.

Our Traverse City Social Security Disability lawyers are here to help. (800) 762-8623

Eligibility for Social Security Disability

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has specific eligibility criteria for those who apply for disability benefits. If you cannot prove you meet the criteria, you will be ineligible for benefits.

Each benefit program has specific eligibility requirements, but generally you must have a medical condition that is included in the SSA list of impairments or a condition that fits the criteria for one of the impairments on this list. You cannot receive benefits for a short-term disability – your medical condition must have lasted one year, or be expected to last one year, or result in your death.

You must also be unable to work or unable to work enough to earn more than the monthly limit set by the SSA in the month you are applying. If you are unable to do your old job, you must also be unable to do another type of work because of your disability.

Applicants under 18 years of age may qualify for benefits if they have a qualifying medical condition and it severely limits their activities, physically or mentally. The SSA defines these conditions in its childhood impairment listing.

Have questions about whether you may be eligible? Call our firm today: (800) 762-8623.

Benefit Programs Available

If you are suffering from a disability and want to apply for federal benefits, you may not realize there are different types of programs you can apply for.

When people refer to SSD benefits, they are often mean Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. This program is meant for people who were working and, because of an accident or developing condition, are no longer able to work. Applicants to this program must have worked enough to accumulate a certain number of work credits based on their age.

Usually, you need to have a minimum of 40 work credits, and you must have earned 20 of those credits in the last 10 years. However, applicants under the age of 24 may qualify if they earned six credits in the three years before their disability started. Applicants between ages 24 and 31 may qualify by having credits for half the time between age 21 and when they apply. The number of work credits needed between age 31 and 42 is 20, and this number increases by one for every year you age.

Supplemental Security Income

There are other programs besides the SSDI program. For example, there is Supplemental Security Income for those with disabilities who have very little, if any work history and limited assets (no more than $2,000 in assets for individual applicants and $3,000 for couples).

If you are thinking about applying for this program because of your limited work history, you may be concerned that you are over the asset limit. However, your home and car are not counted as assets. There are complex rules on assets under this program, and our licensed Traverse City Social Security Disability lawyers are available to discuss them with you.

Disabled Adult Child Benefits

If you or your child is between the age of 18 and 22 and is suffering from a medical condition that severely limits his or her activities, he or she may qualify for benefits. Applicants can work but cannot earn more than the substantial gainful activity limit.

Widow/Widower Benefits

If you are over the age of 60 and your spouse was receiving benefits before he or she died, you may qualify for benefits on your deceased spouse’s earnings record. The age limit is lowered to 50 if you also have a qualifying medical condition.

You will need your deceased spouse’s birth and death certificates, along with Social Security numbers and most recent tax return.

Information You Need to Apply for Benefits

Before starting the application process, it is often a good idea to talk to an experienced attorney about your situation. The attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates are prepared to help guide you through the process. This includes helping you gather information for your application, such as:

  • Last W-2 you received
  • Social Security number
  • Proof of your age
  • Documentation and summary of your work history
  • Medical records, including records from hospitals, doctors’ offices, therapists, caseworkers, etc.
  • Names and dosages of your prescription medications
  • Proof of your marriage, if applying with your spouse
  • Proof of the age of any family members who may be applying with you
  • Contact information for the health care professionals who have provided treatment for your disability
  • Test results that may help prove your diagnosis

You can apply for benefits over the phone, online or in-person at your local Social Security Administration office. The SSA has a toll-free number to call: 1-800-772-1213. The SSA office in Traverse City is located at 1329 S Division St.

Contact our Traverse City Social Security Disability attorneys to learn how we may be able to assist you. (800) 762-8623

Typical Reasons Why Applications are Denied

One of the main advantages of hiring experienced legal representation is they can draw on their knowledge of why claims are often denied and help you build a stronger application. Our attorneys can review your application to correct any minor errors and determine when you may need more evidence about your disability and how it affects you physically or mentally.

Not Enough Medical Evidence

This is one of the most common reasons for a denial. You need detailed evidence, including doctor’s notes and treatment records, to show your medical condition fits the criteria for one of the SSA listings. You may get a false sense of security after going through a medical exam requested by the SSA. However, the exam my not be enough.

A Previous Application was Already Denied

Generally, it is best to appeal a denied application instead of filing a new one. If you were already denied once, the SSA will know about it and is likely to deny you again.

Earning too Much Money

You cannot earn more than the substantial gainful activity limit (SGA limit) in the year you are applying for benefits, and this limit changes each year. In 2020, applicants cannot earn more than $2,110 if they are statutorily blind or $1260 if they are not blind.

Failing to Seek Treatment

Applicants need to make reasonable effort to receive treatment for their medical condition and try to improve their condition. That may mean taking a medication prescribed by a doctor, using mobility aids, or taking other steps recommended by doctors to help manage your physical or mental limitations. The claims examiner needs this information to determine it is your disability that is preventing you from working.

Failing to Cooperate with the SSA

If documents are requested, or you are asked to undergo an exam, make sure to do it and be as cooperative as possible. Show up on time and do not skip appointments as this may reflect poorly on your application.

Drug and alcohol abuse may cause an application to be denied as well. However, if you have a substance abuse problem in addition to your disability, and your disability was not caused by your substance abuse, you may still qualify for benefits. It is important to be forthcoming about it.

My Claim Was Denied. What do I do Now?

You have just 60 days from the date your application was denied to file an appeal. Jay Trucks and Associates is ready to take your call anytime, night or day, to schedule a free consultation. If you hire us to represent you, we are prepared to manage every step of the appeals process.

The first appeal is called a Request for Reconsideration. A claims examiner not involved in reviewing your initial application will reconsider evidence already provided, along with any new evidence you submit.

If the examiner upholds the denial, you can request a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). You or your attorney can submit new evidence at the hearing and will likely be questioned by the judge. Your attorney can help prepare you for the hearing to help you present a strong argument to the judge.

The next step, if the ALJ decides to uphold the denial of your application, is to request a hearing in front of the appeals council. The council can decide to hear your claim or send you to another ALJ for an second hearing.

The final option for an appeal is to file a lawsuit in federal court. Unfortunately, no new evidence may be submitted at this stage of the process.

Has your application been denied? Our Traverse City Social Security Disability lawyers are ready to help. Call us today at (800) 762-8623.

Are Military Veterans Eligible for Social Security Disability?

You can apply for SSD benefits while receiving disability benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). However, you are not automatically eligible for SSD benefits simply because you are eligible for veterans’ benefits. That is because the SSD program is for people who are totally disabled, while veterans can be much less disabled than those on SSD benefits and still qualify for VA benefits.

If you are 70 percent disabled according to VA ratings, you may meet SSD requirements and qualify for benefits. However, if your rating is lower, you are less likely to be approved for SSD benefits.

If you became disabled during your military service on or after October 1, 2001, you are eligible for an accelerated application process.

Are Benefits Available if I am Still Working?

Yes, you can still work and receive SSDI benefits. There is no restriction on the number of hours or days you are permitted to work. However, you cannot earn more than the SGA limit in the year you are applying.

This is a complex issue that should be discussed with your attorney. After reviewing your situation, our attorneys can determine if you may still qualify based on how much you are working, your disability and your earnings history.

Ticket to Work Program

If you want to keep working while receiving benefits, you should consider applying for the Ticket to Work program. The purpose of this program is to help people with disabilities get back into the workforce and become financially independent, all while still receiving your benefits.

When you are participating in the program the SSA cannot do any continuing disability reviews.

You are not eligible for this program if you have already received a continuing disability review.

When Should I Expect to Receive Benefits?

It takes between 30 and 60 days from the date of the approval of your application to receive your first check. If it has been more than 90 days and you have not received a check, it is important to contact your attorney so he or she can inquire about what is going on.

Call a Traverse City Social Security Disability Lawyer Today

Even a small error could lead to your application for benefits being denied. You should seriously consider reviewing your application with a licensed attorney, particularly if your application has already been denied. There is limited time to appeal, and we are ready to take your call anytime, so do not hesitate to contact us.

In over 30 years serving residents across the state of Michigan, we have established a track record of success, recovering more than $500 in compensation on behalf of our clients.

The initial consultation is free, and if we validate your claim, there is no upfront cost for hiring us to represent you. We only get paid if you receive benefits. There is no risk in contacting us to find out how we may be able to assist you.

Call today: (800) 762-8623 or complete our Free Case Evaluation form.