Will Social Security Disability will send you to Rehab to train you to do other work?

No. The two disability programs operated by the social security administration (title II benefits which are Social Security Disability and title 16 benefits which are SSI, or supplemental security income) have only one purpose: to determine if an applicant for benefits has a physical or mental condition that satisfies the definition of disability used by social security.

The federal SSA definition of disability, of course, stipulates that an applicant must have a severe impairment (this is a fuzzy concept, but most can agree that a sprained wrist or a pregnancy will not qualify for disability and will be labeled as an NSI, or non-severe impairment), that the impairment or combination of impairments must result in functional limitations (for example, reduced ability to stand, sit, remember, or concentrate) that rule out the ability to engage in work activity while earning a substantial and gainful income, and that the disabling condition must last, or be expected to last, for at least a year.

By the same token, the social security administration offers zero assistance with utilities, housing maintenance costs, and medications while a disability application is pending (by contrast, a pending disability-medicaid application that is filed with a local department of social services may, in some states, make the applicant temporarily eligible for medication vouchers).

I some states because, of course, because there seems to be more variance in programs that are administered at the local and municipal levels; however, when I was a medicaid caseworker (prior to my becoming a Social Security Disability claims examiner), this was the case in my county and state of North Carolina.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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