The news you are hearing from your doctor is devastating; you have cervical cancer.
As soon as the important medical decisions have been made, your thoughts may turn to how you are going to continue to pay your bills, stay in your home, and put food on your table. How will you make ends meet if you can’t work? How will you care for yourself and your children?
Social Security disability may help you if your cervical cancer is likely to result in a permanent disability. Typically, that means that your cancer will keep you out of work for at least a year, or is terminal. You must also otherwise qualify for benefits.
Here’s How to Apply
If you want to apply for Social Security disability, you can do so online, by phone, or at a Social Security office. Before you do so, it is important to have the necessary information about:
- Yourself. You will need personal information such as your social security number, birthdate, place of birth, information about your spouse and children, and your banking information.
- Your work history. This is a comprehensive work history. It will include things such as how much money you have earned the past few years, the jobs you’ve held over the past 15 years, information about any workers’ compensation you’ve received, and any military service.
- Your medical condition. This will include detailed information about your doctors, the results of any tests that have been done, and complete information about your treatment.
The application process can be lengthy and confusing, but it is important.
Why You Should Apply for Social Security Disability Anyway
We won’t lie to you. The Social Security disability application process is filled with paperwork and in some ways is typical of government bureaucracy. However, it is also important. It is a benefit that you have earned through your years of work and paying into the Social Security system. If awarded, it can allow you to:
- Pay your bills. Your benefits may provide you with enough money to stay afloat financially.
- Take the burden off your shoulders. You have enough to deal with right now. You need to focus on your health, yourself, and your family. If you qualify for Social Security disability, the financial stress may be taken off your shoulders.
- Take the burden off your family. If you cannot work and you do not apply for Social Security disability, the financial burden of caring for your family may fall to your spouse, your children, or your parents.
Given these benefits, Social Security disability may be worth fighting for—even if your initial application is denied.
Avoid Five Common Reasons Why Social Security Disability Applications Are Denied
An application for Social Security disability benefits may be denied if:
- A piece of required documentation is not provided.
- There is a small error on the application.
- The SSA determines that the applicant can work. This may be in the line of work the applicant did prior to her diagnosis or another line of work.
- The applicant did not follow her doctors’ recommended course of treatment.
- The applicant simply submits an application for reconsideration that has already been denied.
A denial means that the applicant does not get Social Security disability benefits unless she takes further action, such as pursuing an appeal.
These benefits are worth fighting for and they can be yours without the headache of a complicated and frustrating process. To learn more about how to make the Social Security disability application process easier please read our free book, Social Security Disability: What You Need to Know.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.