Topic Categories:

Social Security Disability Definitions

Social Security Disability and SSI Overview

The Requirements for Disability

Social Security Disability and SSI Applications

Tips and Advice for Disability Claims

How long does Disability take?

Common Mistakes after Receiving a Disability Denial

Social Security Disability and SSI Denials

Social Security Disability and SSI Appeals

Social Security Mental Disability Benefits

Disability Benefits offered through Social Security

Benefits through SSI disability

Disability Benefits for Children

Disability Qualifications and How to Qualify

Social Security Disability and Working

Winning your Disability Benefits

Social Security Disability Back Pay Benefits

Social Security Disability SSI Awards and Award Notices

Disability Lawyers and Hiring an Attorney

Social Security Disability SSI List of Conditions

What is considered a Disabling condition by Social Security?

Social Security Disability SSI and Medical Evidence

Filing for Disability Benefits

Eligibility for Disability Benefits

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Financial Help When You Are Filing For Disability

If you are considering filing for social security disability (SSD) benefits, you are likely suffering from a medical condition that is seriously compromising, if not outright inhibiting your ability to perform tasks associated with work. You may already be experiencing a loss of earnings as a result of your condition, or be facing calls from bill collection agencies, or even the prospect of losing your home. For some individuals filing for SSD, paying for utilities, getting medical care, even putting food on the table, are tasks that get more difficult by the day.

The bad news is, the process of filing for disability is a long one. The initial claim can take four months (or longer) to be evaluated, after which 70 percent are rejected. The request for reconsideration can take several months as well, and around 85 percent of those are rejected as well. If you choose to file a new claim, you face starting all over, with the resultant waiting periods, after which you may be rejected once again. If you choose to appeal your case before an administrative judge (the most commonly recommended course of action), it could be two years before the case is heard.

The real question is, how do you survive financially while waiting to be approved for social security disability benefits? Well, the good news is, there are free resources available to those in need, and tapping these resources can help float you until your social security disability benefits are granted. In anticipation of these difficulties, you should take the following steps:

1. Get help paying your utilities. You local social services department should be able to provide you with the appropriate contact information, and may even offer one-time assistance for bills (not during the winter months). For help during the winter months, check into the low income energy assistance program (LIEAP).

2. Get help, even if itís only temporary, with paying your medical expenses. Again, your local social services department or county health department should be able to point you in the right direction here, providing the names of free clinics, churches, charitable organizations, or prescription assistance programs with resources available to those in need. You may also consider filing for Medicaid, because some counties allow you to receive medical benefits while your claim is being processed, even if your disability claim is ultimately denied.

3. Get help putting food on the table. File for food stamps, WIC (if you have minor children), and any other food assistance programs available in your area.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria