SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY INSURANCE
Social Security Disability Insurance is a Federal Program that if a disabled party is eligible will pay monthly benefits to workers who are no longer able to work due to a significant illness or impairment that is expected to last at least one (1) year or which is expected to result in death within one (1) year. Social Security Disability is part of the Social Security Program and is based on the disabled workers past earnings. Disability benefits are paid to the disabled worker and to his/her dependent family members. To be eligible for Social Security Disability Benefits, the Social Security law states that an applicant must be unable 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 which has lasted or is expected to last for a continued period of at least 12 months. Furthermore, the impairment or combination of impairments must be of such severity that the applicant is not only unable to do his/her previous work but cannot considering his/her age, education and work experience engage in any other kind of substantial gainful work which exists in the National economy.
Eligibility for Social Security Disability is not based on the amount of assets owned by the individual but is based on one’s disability. In contrast, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal program that pays monthly benefits to low income, age, blindness and disabled individuals. The Social Security Administration also oversees this program.
A benefit of being eligible for Social Security Disability is that a person who becomes eligible and has received Social Security Disability Income for two (2) years becomes eligible for Medicare, therefore, providing health insurance coverage for said individual irrespective of their age. In contrast, the person qualifying for SSI becomes eligible for Medicare immediately upon eligibility for SSI. This provision is critically important because those receiving disability benefits are often uninsurable, of if insurable, the individual health insurance policies are likely to be very costly.
Workers Compensation is a form of insurance that employers pay to the State of Pennsylvania. Workers Compensation provides compensation for workers injured at the work place, as well as, during the performance of employee’s duties occurring outside of the work place. Workers Compensation insurance will pay, if an employee is eligible, for the health costs, as well as, provide compensation to the employee during their period of injury. If an employee is denied workers compensation, our office will assist the employee in receiving workers compensation through the administrative workers compensation claims process. This process involves not only filing claims but gathering appropriate medical evidence through expert witnesses, depositions and interrogatories that substantiate that the employee’s injury is work related.