The process of applying for Social Security Income (SSI) entails several different steps depending on the type of SSI the applicant is seeking. In all cases, applicants must apply in-person or over the phone. The application process for those with disabilities does involve some steps that applicants can take online, but they must follow these up with either a phone call or by making an appointment at their local Social Security Office.
The application process for those with disabilities or who are reaching the age of retirement does involve some steps that applicants can take online, but they must follow these up with either a phone call or by making an appointment at their local Social Security Office. Elderly adults who are applying for SSI can call 1-800-772-1213 to begin their social security application process. Make sure you have as much information about your self available for when they ask about your personal life. We will get into what you will need further down in this article.
Be Prepared for the Application Process
The application process requires a fairly extensive amount of information including the applicant’s name, date of birth and social security number as well as the names, dates of birth and social security numbers for any spouses the applicant may have had throughout his or her lifetime. The applicant will also need to provide information related to marriages such as the places and dates of marriage, dates of divorce, or date of spousal death, if applicable.
Have Your Medical Records Available
An adult with disabilities applying for SSI will also need to provide extensive information related to his or her medical condition or conditions. This information should include names, phone numbers, addresses and dates of treatment for all doctors, clinics, and hospitals where the applicant received treatment. The applicant will also need to provide the names of all medications that he or she takes and the name of the doctor who prescribed said medications. The applicant should also provide a list of the names and dates of any medical tests he or she has undergone.
Be Prepared to Provide Detailed Employment and Earnings
The applicant will also need to list employment and earnings-related information such as the names and addresses of any employers he or she worked for in both the previous and current year. The applicant should also list the annual earnings for these jobs. Other employment information needed during this process includes a list of up to five jobs that the applicant held in the 15 years before he or she became unable to work and information about any other benefits that the applicant will be filing for in addition to SSI, such as worker’s compensation.
Things To Keep In Mind
Details are important and the more details you can offer the better. Social Security has a formula for how it determines how much it rewards; while those formulae are strict, they do have some room for personal interpretation. This means that the more information that an applicant can supply than the more reason that a reviewer can be liberal with how they apply the formulae. Which means that someone who gives just the basic information is likely to receive less than someone who gives much more explicit information, so make sure that every detail of the disability is covered.
Describe Your Pain
Part of the review process is to consider the effect that a particular disability has on the person. This means that the more effect that a disability has on the person the more Disability is interested in helping the person. This means that the details are important:
- You need to list how the disability will impact your life.
- If the disability will impact your job list how it will do so.
- If you have hobbies that the disability will affect list those issues as well.
- Do not be afraid to go into detail when it comes to issues that the disability affects.
The gist of the situation is that reviewers are looking for information on how a particular disability affects the life in general of the person affected by it, and they recognize that no two disabilities are the same. As such when applying for Social Security make sure that you describe the problem in as much detail as possible.
The Application Process
When it comes to how to qualify for benefits keep in mind that there are advantages to applying online versus in the Social Security office itself. In the office, you may have access to help with filling out the form, but you do not have as much as time to deal with details and you may lack vital information. Also, you may not be able to call for important information. On the other hand, if you are working from home and filling out the online form gives you access to all of your information allowing you a chance to find and use that information. You can also call for help from any of your sources, including Social Security if you happened to need that help. In short, while you can fill out the paper form at the office, it may be a better idea to fill out the online form for the sake of ease.
Apply Online for Disability Benefits
The SSA also provides an online form called the Apply Online for Disability Benefits page. This page is not an application but instead serves as a place to collect the information that will be needed to start the process of applying for SSI. After completing this page, a Social Security representative will contact the applicant by phone regarding any additional information that is needed for the application process.
Handicap Lines Available
Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing can call 1-800-325-0778. Applicants can also make an appointment to visit their local Social Security Office. Applicants can use the Social Security Office Locator page on The Official Website of the U.S. Social Security Administration to find out where their local office is.
Adults with Disabilities
Adults with disabilities must go through several steps when applying for SSI. An important first step is to review the Adult Disability Checklist located on the Social Security Administration (SSA) website. This checklist will provide a list of all the information the applicant will need to provide throughout the application process. The applicant should then make an appointment with his or her local Social Security office.
Child Disability Starter Kit
The first step of applying for SSI for a child with disabilities is to review the Child Disability Starter Kit located on the SSA website. This kit provides information about the process of applying for SSI for children in addition to a worksheet that lists all the information needed for the application process. Applicants should also be sure to contact the SSA about income thresholds to ensure that the resources available to the child are within the allowed limits for receiving SSI. The next step in the process is to complete the online Child Disability Report on the SSA website. This report will require the applicant to provide information about the child’s medical conditions, education, and medical records. This report can also be completed over the phone or in-person. After completing this report, the applicant should contact the SSA so as to provide to complete the application process and provide any additional information needed.
Make Sure That Your Doctor is Clued In
A lot of applicants forget that the doctor can be of help during the application process. While it is assumed that the doctor will weigh in at some point it can either be passively or actively. Passive help is just when the doctor is interviewed while applying for Social Security benefits; it is just bereft of detail. Active assistance is when the doctor has been given warning; some doctors will include more information than normal for the sake of helping to keep the process smooth. A doctor can help when it comes when it comes to how to qualify so keep him in the loop when applying for Social Security Benefits.
Keep All Parties In The Loop
Applying for Social Security benefits can be a rather thorough process as every party involved, from doctors to roommates, can be potentially interviewed by Social Security. You are also required to obtain some personal information from roommates in order to complete the form. As such it is important to remember that everyone needs to be kept in mind when you apply. It is thus important to keep in mind that a vital part of the process on how to qualify for benefits is asking the right questions of all parties involved and to ensure that they are aware of the ongoing process so as to avoid any surprises that may come up during the process.
Completeness And Follow-Up
It is important to remember that every space needs to be looked at and as many of them need to be filled out as possible in order to complete the process. Some people forget that an important part of how to qualify for benefits is just making sure that the form is completely filled out. Once it has been submitted he process is not necessarily finished; there may be additional references required and some questions that need to be answered. It is important to reply as quickly as possible with any requested information; a delay may force the process to be restarted making all of your work to that point for naught.
Final Tips For Applying
Keep in mind that if even if you are denied you can always appeal the process later. There are no limits to how often you can re-apply but try to determine what caused the denial and allow for that the next time. There are numerous situations where a person may think that they are entitled to benefits, but there are other issues in consideration that caused the application to be denied, ranging from too many spaces that were skipped over to an incomplete medical history. This is a situation where having more information is better than not enough, so go for information overload when possible. Keep in mind that the Social Security Office itself is willing to help as needed. Keep in mind that this means that they are willing to provide advice as needed, and can help you with filling out the form. It is just a matter of actually asking for that assistance that is usually the hardest part.
Checklist When Applying for Social Security Benefits
- Make sure that you have as much information as possible.
- Describe everything in as much detail as possible.
- Make sure that your current doctor is aware of your application so he or she can help.
- Communication is important for all parties.
- Make sure that all t’s are crossed and I’s are dotted.
- Reply with needed information as quickly as possible for best results.
Applying for Disability and Social Security, in general, can be a strenuous process, especially as so much detail is required. But if you can stick with it and complete the process your odds of obtaining the benefits you deserve is much more likely than if you quit partway through. It can be a long process, but completing it can be done, so stick with it. Keep in mind that even if you are denied you can always appeal, so there is always hope. Just be as complete as possible and the process will be over quickly.