Social Security Disability: How SSDI and SSI Claims are Decided

In order to qualify for social disability benefits in San Antonio, Texas, then a certain procedure has to be followed. The first priority of the SSA (Social Security Administration) will be to define the severity of your disability because this will be the determining factor. They take great care in giving everyone an equal chance, hence the 5 step evaluation process through the DDS (Disability Determination Service).

Phase 1:

The first step involves monthly income. When you make more than the SGA (Substantial Gainful Activity) level which currently stands at $1070 then you will not be able to qualify. However, if you earn less than the SGA level then you will move on to the next step.

Phase 2:

The severity of the impairment does play a big part. If the impairment doesn't affect your ability to work then it's not severe enough to qualify for social disability benefits. When the impairment is mildly severe, but can be controlled through medication which allows you to perform normally then it's also grounds for disqualification. There are different levels of severity which is determined by the medical examination.

Phase 3:

The DDS makes use of an existing list with which they compare your disability to. They compare the severity of your disability with those on the list and decide whether it meets the SSA's requirements. Two notes to be made at this phase, not all disabilities are listed and having one that can't be compared results in further steps to make a decision. Secondly, you are able to appeal the result of their decision if it means you do not qualify.

Phase 4:

If in fact the level of severity doesn't meet the necessary requirements additional research will take place. This entails previous work you have done and whether your disability prevents you from either returning or doing it in your present state.

Phase 5:

Last but not least, if you can't perform in prior working conditions, the DDS will try to determine if you can find something else. Based on your age, education and skills, the job doesn't necessary have to pay the same or be close to home.

This is a rather intense evaluation and if you or a loved one needs more clarity regarding Social Security Disability then feel free to contact the lawyers of Carabin Shaw at 210.222.2288. The consultation is free and we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

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