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Social Security disability help when facing unexpected disability

An unexpected disability can leave a disabled individual wondering how to make ends meet and pay for daily expenses. Disability benefits may be available through different sources including Social Security disability as one option to consider. Social Security disability benefits may help disabled individuals address some of those concerns and better provide for their daily needs.

When an individual is unable to work due to a disability that is so severe it renders them unable to engage in gainful employment, they may be able to obtain benefits through the federal Social Security disability program. Disabled individuals must qualify for SSD benefits by having the necessary work credits to have paid into the disability insurance system and suffer from a disabling medical condition that is expected to last for 12 months or longer or result in death.

Disabled individuals should be familiar with the work history calculation as well as how application for disability benefits process works. It includes both an application and several levels of appeals, as 60 percent of initial applications for disability benefits are denied. Disabled applicants should also be familiar with how benefits are calculated which varies by individual. For 2017, the maximum benefit is $2,687 a month, however, the majority of recipients receive between $700 and $1,700 a month with the average benefit amount of $1,171 for 2017.

It is important for disabled individuals to promptly apply for disability benefits because the application process can be complex and the wait may be significant. It is also helpful for them to be as familiar as possible with how to qualify and apply for benefits and appeal a denial of benefits when necessary.

Source: CBS News, "When a sudden disability ends your income," Ray Martin, Oct. 12, 2017

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