According to a new report, the number of pending initial Social Security disability claims will increase to approximately 900,000 at the end of the fiscal year 2014. The number of people waiting for a decision on their initial Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits at the end of fiscal year 2013 was 698,000. The increase could be attributed to the government shut down that took place late in 2013, as well as reductions in staffing at the Social Security Administration. In just the past three years, the Social Security Administration reports that it has decreased its work force by 11,000 employees.Regardless of the cause, these figures illustrate the importance of being well prepared before applying for benefits. The Social Security Administration approves one out of every three initial SSDI applications. Denials are frequently due to technical errors or missing information in the application. In order to improve the chances of application approval, the report offers the following tips:
- Ensure that you meet the eligibility requirements for SSDI benefits.
- Obtain all of the necessary paperwork and complete it accurately and fully.
- Exercise patience when waiting for a decision, and be prepared to file an appeal immediately if your claim is rejected.
- Seek guidance from an experienced professional in order to improve your odds of an approval.
What is SSDI?
SSDI is a federally mandated disability insurance program that provides monthly benefits to people under full retirement age who can no longer work because of a severe disability. In order to qualify, the impairment must be expected to last for more than 12 months, or be terminal. Workers and their employers through the FICA tax program pay for SSDI benefits.
For more information about the Social Security Disability Insurance benefits system, call our office today.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.