Do you need a Wilson Social Security Disability Lawyer? The Bishop Law Firm represents disability clients in Wilson County and we do not get paid unless we win your case and you receive back pay. Call us today for a free case review or start online now.
SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) is based on the credits from the work you have done in your life. You must be found disabled before your date last insured (DLI) to be found eligible for SSDI. Your DLI is calculated by counting your “quarters of coverage” from your earnings record. You must have 20 “quarters of coverage” of the last 40 quarters.
Simply put, you must have worked 5 years of the last ten years (in general). In addition, Adult Disabled Children can be eligible for benefits off their parent’s account.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSI (Supplemental Security Income) is a need-based program and you must meet income/asset standards in addition to being found disabled under the five steps above. In 2023, SSI is $914.00 per month for an individual and $1,371 for an eligible couple. SSI will be reduced by 1/3 if you are receiving financial help from others. In NC, SSI recipients are also entitled to Medicaid.
SSI is also available for disabled children and is evaluated under a different standard than adults. Children must have a medically determinable physical or mental impairment or impairments (including emotional or learning problems) which result in marked and severe functional limitations, and the impairment(s) has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of at least 12 months or be expected to result in death. Child SSI terminates when the child turns 18.
The Social Security Disability Process
Initial: The first step is to apply for disability benefits. You can apply online or by telephone. You can opt to apply without an attorney, or you can choose to hire an attorney from the beginning. Social Security calls this the initial level. In North Carolina, your case is sent to Disability Determination Services (DDS).
Reconsideration: If you are denied at the initial level, you will need to appeal. This appeal is called the reconsideration. The reconsideration level is very similar to the initial level, except a different examiner should review your case.
Hearing Level: If you are denied at the reconsideration level, you will need to request an hearing before an administrative law judge. As discussed above, the Raleigh, NC OHO is your local hearing office.
Appeals Council: If you are denied at hearing, you will have to appeal to the Appeals Council (AC) in Falls Church, VA.
District Court: Lastly, if you are denied by the AC, you will have to file in the Eastern District of North Carolina.
How can hiring a Wilson Social Security Disability Lawyer help?
Unfortunately, DDS (which handles the initial and reconsideration level decisions) denies most people that apply for benefits. Having an attorney in the early stages helps your case move through the process and keeps the examiner informed of any changes to your health, medical treatment, medications, etc. If you receive a denial, appealing as soon as possible is imperative because you do not want any unnecessary delay at these beginning levels.
After you request a hearing, it can take 18-24 months for SSA to schedule that hearing. This illustrates how important eliminating delay in the first stages can be. You can request a dire need to try to get your hearing sooner, but it is up to SSA to approve that request. An attorney can tell you what documentation is needed to request a dire need and frame the request so it has the best chance of being approved.
The hearing will be with an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) who has the power to approve or deny your case. Representation is essential to presenting your case to the ALJ in an efficient and compelling manner. Also, getting your doctor’s opinion and all your medical records to the ALJ in a readable, organized, and timely way is crucial to your success.
If you need a Wilson Social Security Disability Lawyer give The Bishop Law Firm a call today at (919) 615-3095. We do not get paid unless we win your case. We look forward to working with you!