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Helpful resources

We have compiled some helpful resources including forms, frequently asked questions, how to videos and the option to submit a question. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the answers to frequently asked questions that we receive. If you would like to ask a question, click on our Submit a question tab on this page.

What is the difference between SSDI and SSI?

SSDI, or Social Security Disability Insurance, is a long term disability insurance plan that you bought from the Federal Government with your earnings that you paid taxes on. Because it is primarily an insurance policy, the amount of money you could qualify for each month will depend on how much you paid into the system. Additionally because you paid for it, it is not income or means tested. SSDI also comes with Medicare as it’s insurance plan.

SSI, or supplemental security income, is a disability program that is paid for through tax payer dollars. It is for those individuals who do not have the insurance coverage of SSDI insurance. Because it is directly paid for by tax dollars, there are income/asset requirements in addition to proving medical disability. Under SSI, it does not matter solely whether you are medically disabled, if you have assets of more than $2000 for an individual or $3,000 for a married couple, or if you have a spouse who makes over a certain income, you will simply not qualify.

We have more in depth pages discussing the differences between SSDI and SSI (for adults) and for children with disabilities, click here.

What is a CDR?

CDR stands for Continuing Disability Review. If you are currently receiving social security disability benefits of any kind, the Administration will occasionally review your case. It is your burden to continue to prove that you meet the requirements of disability and that you are still disabled. If you are unable to prove continuing disability when your case is reviewed, you may lose your benefits. It is important to continue to treat with your doctors and seek the medical care you need even after you have been granted benefits.

Why did I get denied?

Every case is individual and there are many reasons a case may be denied. Often, it is that the medical records that SSA is reviewing are not clear on how your disability prevents you from working. Sometimes it is that you have to many assets (SSI only), or that you do not have enough work credits to qualify for disability insurance (SSDI only). If you have been denied, it is best to have your case reviewed by someone who has represented hundreds clients in front of the Administration.  Please schedule a call today.

Why did this other person I know get disability and I did not?

Every case is individual and there are many reasons a case may be denied. Often, it is that the medical records that SSA is reviewing are not clear on how your disability prevents you from working. Sometimes it is that you have to many assets (SSI only), or that you do not have enough work credits to qualify for disability insurance (SSDI only). If you have been denied, it is best to have your case reviewed by someone who has represented hundreds clients in front of the Administration.  Please schedule a call today.

How long does it take to get disability?

With exceptions for terminal illnesses and other critical cases, the full wait time in 2023 can be up to three years. When you apply at the Initial level, current wait time for your first decision is 8-12 months. If you are denied and appeal, the wait time for Reconsideration can be up to another year. Finally, if you are denied a third time and appeal, the wait time for a. hearing in front of an administrative law judge can be another 10-12 months. There is very little that can be done to speed things along. Currently, the Administration simply does not have enough adjudicators to handle the backlog of cases.

Can I work while on Disability?

This is a common question with a very complicated answer. First, although it seems to be stated a lot, even by Social Security Representatives, it is not true that you can work “20 hours or less per week.” Social Security does not care about the hours you work, they do care about the amount of money that you are making. Second, there is a very complicated “Trial Work Period” program that often causes people to lose disability benefit and then owe thousands in overpayments. The answer to “ can I work while on disability” is actually so complicated, that it cannot be addressed in this short FAQ section. Instead read this article that discusses this common question in depth.

Submit a question

This is not for personal case inquiries – for that use the contact form. We can only answer general questions through this form. We cannot give legal advice about any particular situation. 

Submit a question

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