Morgantown Injury Lawyer Helps with Social Security Disability Claims West Virginia firm represents clients unable to work due to long-term illness or injury

A long-term illness or injury that prevents you from working can pose a serious financial risk to you and your family. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is designed to provide financial support for employees who qualify for benefits by having worked for a sufficient period of time. Mountaineer Injury Law Group in Morgantown and Martinsburg provides comprehensive counsel to West Virginians who are starting the process of collecting the benefits they’ve earned, as well as those who are appealing a denial from the Social Security Administration.

Understanding SSDI benefits

Started in 1956, SSDI is designed to provide financial support for eligible employees who are not able to work for at least 12 months due to a medical problem, or whose condition is expected to be fatal. Instead of premiums that would be paid to purchase private insurance, the program is funded by payments from employers and deductions from workers’ paychecks. The specific benefit you receive if you qualify is based in part on the amount collected from your wages over your lifetime. If you’ve been disabled, I can examine the facts in your case and advise on what you can expect to receive if your claim is successful.

Eligibility and application process for disabled individuals

You can apply for SSDI benefits online if you satisfy the following requirements:

  • Work credits — An employee is typically credited with one work credit for each quarter-year that they are on the job and paying into the Social Security system. In most cases, an applicant must have recorded at least 20 work credits over the previous 10 years to collect benefits. My firm can review your situation and advise as to your eligibility if you have been in the workforce for fewer than 10 years or have been self-employed.
  • Disability lasting at least 12 months — SSDI is intended for people with long-term or fatal medical conditions. You must be able to show that your injury or illness is going to keep you out of work for at least 12 months. If you can demonstrate this, payments would start in the sixth month of your disability.
  • Inability to perform substantial gainful activity — You can receive SSDI payments if you cannot earn a living due to your illness or injury. This means that you cannot perform substantial gainful activity in your previous position or adjust to a different type of activity. 

Regardless of the specific facts in your case, I will prepare the necessary filings and supporting information so that you can avoid mistakes that could lead to an unfair denial. 

Appealing a denied SSDI claim

Many worthy SSDI claims are originally denied. If you did not receive benefits, you must act quickly to protect your right to an appeal. Within 60 days of the date you receive your denial, you can request reconsideration of your claim. The review likely will take several months. In the event that the decision is not reversed, you can request a hearing before an administrative law judge, where I will represent you and present evidence supporting your claim. There usually is another long wait before the hearing occurs, sometimes even a year. Most reversals do occur at the hearing stage, but if your denial is upheld, my firm can advise on the possibility of bringing the case to the Appeals Council or filing a suit in federal court. 

The difference between SSDI and Supplemental Security Income

It is easy to confuse Social Security and Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While both programs are administered by the Social Security Administration and offer benefits to disabled individuals, there are numerous differences that you should understand. Many people are eligible for one and not the other. SSI is only available to disabled, elderly or blind people who are impoverished and lack the resources to meet their needs. There is no work history requirement. On the contrary, you can collect SSDI benefits regardless of your financial status as long as you have been employed and for the required length of time.

Speak with a West Virginia attorney about your Social Security Disability issue

Mountaineer Injury Law Group handles Social Security Disability Insurance appeals and initial claims for West Virginia residents. For a free consultation at my Morgantown or Martinsburg office, please call 304-202-5835 or contact me online.

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124 Fayette Street,
Morgantown, West Virginia 26505





126 E Burke Street,
Martinsburg, West Virginia 25401