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SSD Lawyer

|  Social Security Disability Lawyers  |  Social Security Disabililty (SSD)  |
|  Supplemental Security Income (SSI)  |

No one likes to think about becoming disabled.  However, statistics show that a 20 year old has a 1 in 4 chance of becoming disabled before reaching retirement age.

Social Security Disability insurance pays benefits to an individual if they are “insured”.  To be insured, you have to have worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes.

To be eligible, you must have paid into the Social Security system within the last 10 years prior to the onset of your disability.  Your contribution to the Social Security system comes from your wages or your self-employment income.  To receive Social Security Disability, you must have enough “work credits” built up.

What does it mean to be “disabled?”

In order to receive Social Security Disability insurance benefits, you must be found to be disabled.  The Social Security Administration will apply a 5 step test to determine if you are disabled within the meaning of the applicable statutes.
  1. Are you working?  If you are working, you generally are not considered disabled.  However, you are allowed to work and earn a limited income.  The amount allowed changes year to year.  If you are not working due to a medical condition, go to step 2.
  2. Is your medical condition ”severe?”  A severe medical condition (or combination of medical problems) must significantly limit your ability to perform basic work activities (lifting, standing, walking, sitting, etc.) for a period of 12 months or longer.  If your medical condition is not severe, you are not considered disabled.
  3. Does your medical condition or impairment meet or equal a condition on the Social Security “listings”.  The Social Security Administration maintains a listing of medical conditions that are considered severe enough to prevent you from completing substantial gainful employment.  The listing does not depend on your age, education, or work experience.  If your medical condition meets or equals one or more of the listed impairments, you have a qualifying disability.  Even if you do not have a qualifying disability, you may still qualify by going on to steps 4 and 5.
  4. Can you perform the work you did before?  Even if you do not meet the “listing” conditions, you may still qualify for benefits if the Social Security Administration finds that your medical condition prevents you from performing any of your past work.  If you can still do one of your old jobs, you are not qualified.  If you cannot perform any of your old jobs due to medical conditions, you move on to step 5.
  5. Can you perform other types of work?  The Social Security Administration will consider your age, education, work experience and skills you have that could be used for other work.  If you can do other work, you are not considered disabled.  If your medical condition shows you cannot perform other work, the Social Security Administration will consider you to be disabled and you should receive Social Security Disability benefits.
Understand the benefits and protections you are entitled to under the law.  KNOWLEDGE IS POWER.

Why Choose Banik & Renner?

  • Individualized service with no assembly line representation
  • The lawyer you meet with is the lawyer who represents you
  • We are local attorneys who have practiced in the community since graduation from Notre Dame Law School three decades ago.
  • We attend seminars and remain current in our areas of practice
  • We ask questions and we really listen to your answers to help you
  • We will not “hard sell” you on our representation
  • We explain your options in words you can understand or keep trying until you do.        

What do I need to do before meeting with an Attorney?

  • Gather all paperwork in your possession from the Social Security Administration and bring it with you to your appointment
  • Write down the names and addresses of all of the doctors, therapists, hospitals visited or other medical services and providers you have seen in the last 5 years
  • Write down the names and addresses of all of your places of employment you have worked in the last 5 years including your job title and duties.

How do I contact Banik & Renner?

Click here to contact us or call 574.293.7170 for more information or to schedule a FREE CONSULTATION.

SSD Frequently Asked Questions

When should I file for disability?
If you are unable to work or you have been forced to reduce your hours such that you are earning below $1,130.00 a month (the limit as of 2016) and assuming that your disability is going to last more than one year, you should file for Social Security Disability.  You should file as soon as you are unable to work because approval can be a long process.

Should I file online or go to the Social Security Office?
If you are comfortable with filling out information on line and you have all of your medical and employment information available, you could file online.  Many people feel more comfortable meeting with a Social Security representative to assist with the process.  In either case, it is extremely important to make sure that you have the names and addresses of all of your medical providers and employers available so that all of your records and employment records can be obtained for review of your eligibility.

I applied over a year ago and I have heard nothing - what should I do?
Contact the local Social Security office. You will want to assure that you provide the names and addresses of any doctors that you have been seeing since your initial application so that your medical file can be updated and supplemented.

My application for benefits has been denied - what should I do?
FILE YOUR APPEAL WITHIN 60 DAYS OF THE DATE OF THE DENIAL.  If you contact the law offices of Banik & Renner we can assist you in filing your Social Security Disability Appeal and review and assess your case.  If you have not been following up with your physicians you should do so.  It is very difficult to be approved if you do not have medical documentation to support your disability.
For more information or to apply for benefits go to


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