Social Security Disability has two federal government programs designed to help people that aren’t able to work full time due to a medical condition. They’re called Social Security disability insurance benefits (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While the application processes for these two programs use some of the same application forms, they each have unique and special considerations that are distinct from one another.
If you are thinking about filing for Social Security Disability, here are a few pointers that can guide you through the process.
Where can I go to file an application?
Social Security has several ways to file an application. If you are filing for Social Security disability (SSDI) you can fill out a disability application online. However, it is important to note that regular Social Security (SSI) does not have an online application. You can file an application by calling the government’s toll-free telephone number at 1-800-772-1213. If you are deaf or hard of hearing, you can call the government at 1-800-325-0778.You can also visit a local security office in person. The government has an online tool that can help you find the social security office that services your zip code. Of course, at the Packard Law Firm, we also can help you file for benefits. Those that get help from an attorney find it easier to make it through the entire application process.
What Forms Will I Need to File For Social Security Benefits?
Regardless of whether you fill out an application in person, online, over the phone, or with an attorney, there are four main forms that must be completed.
Initial Application Form
The first step is to complete the initial disability application form. For an SSI application, that form is SSA-8001-BK. For a SSDI application, that form is SSA-16-BK. This form will gather personal information about you and your family.
After that, both SSI and SSDI, requires you to fill out what they call a disability report (SSA-3368-BK). This form focuses on your date of disability and your medical history. The Social security administration will ask you to include the names, addresses, phone numbers, and dates of service of all doctors, hospitals (including ER visits), and clinics where you have been treated and are currently being treated for your condition. They will also ask for the names of all the medications you are prescribed and a list of any medical tests that you have received. Check here for a more comprehensive list of what the government will ask in this form.
Function and Report
The third type of forms the government will ask you to complete the adult disability report (SSA-3373-BK). The Social Security Administration often calls this the “Function Report”. This form ask questions that relate to your normal activities of daily living. The government uses this form to evaluate how your medical condition affects your day-to-day life. Essentially the government uses your answers on this form to see if the way you live your life is consistent with the impairments and limitations you are alleging.
The final type of form that the government will ask you to complete the Authorization to Disclose Information (SSA-827-BK). This form is essentially the authorization that you give to the government for them to gather your medical records. The government will ask you to fill out a work history report (SSA-3369-BK) This form will gather your employment history for the last 15 years. The government wants to know your job title, the name of the business, dates you worked, the number of hours worked per day, and your rate of pay for each job.
Unfortunately, many applicants do not know that there are so many forms involved in a single application. As a result, they will only fill out the first form regarding your personal identification, but fail to fill out the disability report, function report or authorizations. If someone fails to submit any of one of these forms, the application is not complete and it will not be processed.
How can the Packard Law Firm Help Me?
When people apply for Social Security Disability benefits on their own, they quickly realize how daunting and time consuming the process can be. If you need help applying for disability, here are some great reasons to give the Packard Law Firm a call today.
You’ll get a free case evaluation to determine how strong your case is. We will also look to see if you you meet the government's qualifications for disability.
We will file your application as quickly as possible. We do all we can to make sure that no time is lost!
We will help you describe your past work in a way that gives you the best chance to win your case in a way that is honest and persuasive.
We will search for ways to maximize your monthly income benefits.
We will find ways to maximize the amount of “back pay" you can receive.
We will search for possibilities of your case being expedited.
Perform a background search to find out which medical records will be most helpful for your case.
Help you sort out the questions that are hidden traps and which are NOT important. You will be surprised!
Give you some advice on what you can do on your own to strengthen your case.
In sum, we will take care of your case so that you can have the the peace of mind to take care of your health and your family.
Making a mistake in any one of these forms could cost you thousands of dollars in benefits, while in some instances, ruins your chance of winning benefits completely. An experienced disability law firm will help you navigate through the system to maximize your chance of getting the benefits you deserve.
How Likely Are You to Win Benefits?
The Packard Law Firm offers a free evaluation of your disability case. Contact us today to learn more by filling out the form here.