If you have been unfortunate enough to have been diagnosed with sickle cell disease, you might find that you are eligible for Social Security disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). If you are eligible, this program could help you pay for all your medical treatment and many other costs you are confronted with on a daily basis.
You cannot expect these payments to come automatically, as you need to provide a certain amount of information when you file your application.
Criteria for Applying for SSDI Benefits
Once your application has been received, the SSA will use specific criteria to confirm your eligibility. These are both medical and non-medical and they determine if you qualify for Social Security disability (SSDI). The priority is proving you have a medical disability. Next, you are required to have received enough work credits to be classified as "insured" under the SSDI guidelines. Alternately, if you have a small amount of assets and income, you may qualify for the SSI program.
Medical Documents Needed in Your Application
If you have been off work for 12 months or more due to sickle cell disease, you must provide medical documentation that supports you having sickle cell disease. You must get your physician to provide confirmation of your diagnosis. You will also need to include details of any treatment you are receiving, lab results confirming the diagnosis, any day to day symptoms you have to put up with, and any drugs you are being prescribed.
You must provide the names, addresses, and phone numbers of any physicians or other health workers, including medical centers and hospitals, you attended for treatment.
Other Information You’ll Need
Your work record needs to be provided too, and this should show that at some point in time you were working in a full time job and your sickle cell disease caused you to give up full time employment. The SSA will want a summary of your places of employment and what duties were assigned to you. You will need to add your recent W-2 form.
If you were self-employed, you will be asked to provide your most recent tax return form, your birth certificate and your Social Security number.
How a Social Security Attorney Can Help You with Your Application
Applying for SSDI or SSI benefits is never easy. Often, the SSA tries to make it hard for you to qualify, despite any proof you may have provided. To help make sure you get your benefit entitlements, you may wish talk to a Social Security attorney who knows how to work on your behalf and fast track your application by ensuring you have all the required documents you need proving your eligibility for either SSDI or SSI.
If your application is denied the first time around, your Social Security attorney can lodge an appeal on your behalf. Social Security attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they only get paid if they win you your benefit entitlements.