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If you have a permanent disability that prevents you from working, you may qualify to receive Social Security disability, or SSD, benefits. Qualifying for SSD benefits in Winston-Salem requires veterans to meet several criteria outlined by the Social Security Administration (SSA). An accomplished Social Security attorney can advise you on applying for SSD benefits or work hard on your behalf to secure a successful appeal in the event of a denial.

Qualifying Impairments

A veteran may be eligible for SSD benefits in Winston-Salem if their impairment is on the SSA’s list of qualifying conditions. Former servicemembers applying for SSD benefits must provide adequate medical proof of their impairment through detailed health records. These qualifying disabilities are wide-ranging and include various types of musculoskeletal disorders, heart ailments, respiratory impairments, and digestive disorders.

If a veteran’s medical records do not fulfill the criteria to establish the presence of one or more qualifying disabilities, their claim will be denied. For this reason, it may be more advantageous for some former servicemember seeking SSD benefits to apply based on the sequential evaluation process.

The Sequential Evaluation Process

The SSA considers many factors when determining whether a veteran qualifies for SSD benefits. These factors are based on extensive medical evidence and employment or military service records supplied by the applicant.

A former servicemember’s disability must prevent them from maintaining substantial gainful employment. As of Jan. 2020, veterans who are unable to earn more than $1,260 per month in Winston-Salem may qualify for SSD benefits, but this amount changes annually.

The applicant must prove that their disabling condition has previously hindered them from maintaining substantial gainful employment for at least one year, that it will inhibit them from doing so for at least one year, or that it is expected to result in death. If a veteran’s disability meets these criteria and is featured on the SSA’s list of impairments, they may qualify for SSD benefits.

If the applicant’s disability is not on the impairment list, the SSA will consider whether the applicant can engage in any type of work based on their employment background. If the agency determines that a former servicemember cannot return to gainful employment, they may be awarded SSD benefits.

The review process can take one year or more in some cases. Veterans applying for disability compensation from the SSA may be granted expedited processing if they receive a 100 percent disability rating from the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA). Former servicemembers who have received a total disability rating from VA may receive a resolution to their claim for SSD benefits in a matter of weeks.

Ask a Winston-Salem Attorney about Qualifying for SSD Benefits Today

Qualifying for SSD benefits in Winston-Salem can be stressful and lengthy process, but working with a skilled lawyer can reduce the burden of trying to handle a claim on your own. An attorney with in-depth knowledge of the Social Security disability system can walk you through the application and interview process. If your claim is denied by the SSA, we can also help you file a request for a reconsideration. Schedule your case consultation with a Winston-Salem lawyer today.