Trauma Survivors Network - provided by ATS

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A Program of the ATS

Disability Benefits

A person is considered eligible for disability benefits when they meet the Social Security Administration’s definition of disability. Social Security pays only for total disability. No benefits are payable for partial disability or for short-term disability. They define disability as the “inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months” or “blindness” as defined as “central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the use of a correcting lens.”

There are several different programs that pay disabilities benefits and each program, besides requiring that you meet the disability definition, also has several other requirements in order to be eligible for disabilities benefits. The Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) program and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program are the two most common that pay disabilities benefits and both have different prerequisites. While the SSDI requires that you worked for a certain amount of time under Social Security, SSI requires that you have a limited income, limited resources, and be an American citizen or classified in an approved alien category.

Disability insurance coverage maybe bought by individuals or by employers for their employees. The federal law requires the employer to provide all employees with a copy of their health care and disability coverage. This summary is called the Summary Plan Description (SPD).

Long Term Disability (LTD) coverage is effective during the employee's actual employment. If the individual becomes disable while the policy is in effect, he will be eligible for coverage even after the policy has been terminated. Refer to the Glossary of Terms section for more information.

Workers' compensation reimburse employees who have been incapacitated by a work realted injury. This policy covers medical expenses and compensates for economic loss, pain and suffering.

Veterans disability compensation is similar to that of workers' compensation. The veterans benefits are paid for service realted injuries.

You should apply for disability benefits for all programs as soon as you become disabled because there is some waiting time to receive the benefits after filing your claim. SSDI does not pay benefits until six months after the onset of the disability while SSI pays benefits either the month after the claim is made or by the date you become eligible for SSI.
For more information visit this website: Disability Benefits



Associated pages

Social Security Administration(SSA) Summary Guide to Employment
Social Security Disability Insurance
Supplemental Security Income