Supplemental Security Income–SSI

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If an injury or condition prevents you from being able to work to support yourself and your family, a federal program known as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) can provide income benefits to meet your basic needs. Even when it is very obvious that you should qualify for benefits, however, it can be difficult to get approval from the Social Security Administration, the agency that administers the program.

That’s where the assistance of an experienced disability attorney can be very effective. At Burgess & Christensen, we focus all our efforts in helping individuals gain the disability benefits they deserve. We understand how to build a strong case to show that you meet qualifications. If you receive a denial letter, we know how to appeal and present your case convincingly before a judge. We are ready to provide assistance right from the start of the process or after you have been denied. We can help you understand your eligibility and fight for the right benefits to meet your needs.

Understanding SSI

SSI payments are designed to help individuals meet their basic needs when they are unable to work and have limited income and assets. If you do have some income or, the benefits you receive could be reduced, and if you have too much income or too many assets, then you are not eligible to receive benefits.

If you show that you qualify, you can receive monthly payments to help cover the cost of housing, clothes, and other essentials. You may also receive back payments to make up for benefits that you did not receive during the time your application was under consideration.

Eligibility Hinges on Two Factors

To qualify for SSI benefits, you must prove that your disability prevents you from working and you must also show that your income and assets are below that limit for eligibility. Both of these qualifying factors require you to submit quite a bit of evidence, but the problem for most people is demonstrating that their disability meets the standards for eligibility set by the agency.

An experienced disability attorney can help you gather and present persuasive evidence to prove you qualify. That is one of the primary ways we assist clients at Burgess & Christensen.

Income and Asset Limits for SSI

In order to qualify for SSI you must show that you own no more than $2,000 in “countable” assets if you are single or $3000 if you are married. You are allowed to keep some assets that will not be counted against your eligibility so that you have a place to live and a vehicle to drive. If you have more than one vehicle, the value of that will count toward the $2,000 limit if you are single or $3,000 limit if you are married. Money in the bank counts as an asset, and jewelry counts if you are holding it for the value. But jewelry that you wear is considered personal property that is not countable toward the limit. The process of assessing what counts and what doesn’t can be confusing, but we can help you.

Disability Requirements

You will need to present considerable evidence to prove that you suffer from a condition that prevents you from working. The condition does not need to be permanent, but it must be something that either keeps you from working for at least a year or that is expected to lead to your death.

You will need medical evidence to show the extent of your disabling condition and you will also need evidence to show how your condition prevents you from working. 

The Process of Applying May Require Many Stages

Once you submit an initial application with supporting evidence, you’ve only completed the first step in what is often a multi-stage process. Our team can assist you at every stage. The Administration often denies initial applications, and if they do, you can file a request for reconsideration, along with additional evidence. If the reconsideration is denied, then your next step is to present your case to a judge at an administrative hearing. This is usually the best opportunity to succeed in receiving approval for benefits. However, if the judge denies your claim, we can appeal your decision to the Appeals Council and then if necessary, pursue your case in Federal District Court.

Burgess & Christensen Fights to Get Your SSI Benefits

We understand that if you could work, you would. Being at the mercy of a program like SSI is not your first choice. However, it may be essential for your future welfare, so we want to help you gain the benefits you need.

For a free consultation to learn how we may be able to assist you, contact us now. 

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    When you are unable to work, you still need to support yourself and your family. Call us at 770-422-8111 or contact us online. We do not charge any fees until the disability claim is approved and our fees are authorized.