Often referred to as the “Steel City,” Pueblo, Colorado is a diverse community that is home to more than 106,000 people. Approximately 100 miles south of Denver, Pueblo is a city that is rich in history.
The economy in Pueblo is strong with many employers, including schools, medical centers, and manufacturing facilities.
Although there is are a variety of employers in the Pueblo and surrounding areas, some individuals remain unemployed. Some of these Pueblo residents are unable to work as a direct result of a serious health condition.
Despite having a stable work history, some individuals have been forced to stop working due to their declining health.
If there is a silver lining, it is that Pueblo is a city with abundant resources. Disabled residents have access to some of the best health care providers in the state. Two of the largest employers in the Pueblo area are Parkview Medical Center and St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center.
Further, permanently disabled individuals in Pueblo can apply for financial assistance from the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Health Resources for Individuals Living in Pueblo
When illness strikes, it can be challenging to know where to first turn for help. Indeed one’s health is of primary concern. However, the financial demands of life do not go away with a new health diagnosis.
Car payments, rent, and other bills continue to be delivered, despite the inability to pay. Additionally, new medical bills are often added to the mix. Financial responsibilities often compound an already stressful situation.
Understanding that an unexpected health crisis can happen to anyone, the SSA developed the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. As the name suggests, this program is available to individuals who have paid into the system through federal employment taxes.
These individuals, who are “insured” through their contributions, may file for withdrawal of disability benefits.
While most individuals who have worked at least part-time over the last decade will technically qualify for SSDI benefits, not all applicants will be granted an award. In fact, approximately two-thirds of claimants are declined disability benefits during the initial application phase.
Only those individuals who are the most critical and who can provide the required medical documentation to prove such will be considered for a disability award.
The SSA bases much of its decision on the documentation provided by your doctor. Therefore, it’s essential to be actively receiving treatment from a doctor.
Not only should you attend all of your appointments, but you should also be sure that you have had a recent visit with your doctor. The SSA will seek documentation from your doctor that speaks to your diagnosis, your symptoms, your treatments, and your progress.
There are many reputable physicians in the Pueblo area, listed below local health care offices that might be of assistance to you.
Pueblo Family Medicine
1600 North Grand Avenue, #350
Pueblo, CO 81003
Parkview Medical Center
216 W 13th Street
Pueblo, Colorado 81003
N Hall St 93291
University Family Medicine Center Pueblo
4020 Jerry Murphy Road Pueblo, CO 81001
Applying for Social Security Disability in Pueblo
To qualify for SSDI benefits in Pueblo, you must meet both the technical and the medical requirements. To meet the technical specification, you must have worked long enough, as well as recent enough, to qualify for disability benefits.
“Work Credits” are earned based on the amount of income you generate annually. You may receive a maximum of four work credits each year. The number of work credits required to qualify for SSDI is dependent on the age that you become disabled.
Once it has been determined that an individual has earned enough work credits, the SSA decides if the person’s health condition is severe enough to limit their ability to work.
The SSA will review the applicant’s past work history, evaluating whether the claimant can perform at a job that has been done before or at another position for which the person is qualified to do.
The easiest and most straight-forward way to earn a disability determination is by “meeting a Blue Book listing.” The Blue Book is the SSA’s online listing of impairments. Included in this manual are all of the illnesses and injuries that the SSA deems critical enough to earn an award.
If an individual meets the qualifications of a Blue Book listing, they are automatically granted a disability award.
It’s important to clarify that SSDI benefits are reserved for individuals who are permanently disabled. As such, the SSA will only grant award to those claimants who are expected to be disabled for at least one year. Short-term illnesses do not qualify for SSDI benefits.
There are a few different ways to apply for SSDI benefits, including online, by mail, by telephone, or in person. Some applicants prefer to visit a local Social Security office. Here are three SSA offices in around the Pueblo area.
Pueblo Social Security Office 81008
3769 Parker Blvd
Pueblo, CO 81008
Canon City Social Security Office 81212
115 North 10th Street
Canon City, CO 81212
Colorado Springs Social Security Office 80909
2306 East Pikes Peak Ave
Colorado Springs, CO 80909
Seek the Counsel of a Social Security Attorney
If you get sick, all efforts go towards health and recovery. Unfortunately, the financial aspects of life do not go away when one falls ill. Winning a Social Security disability award can mean all the difference for an individual and their family.
Sadly, earning an award is not that simple. Applicants are competing with millions of others who are also seeking financial assistance.
Hiring a Social Security lawyer can help differentiate your application from others. The majority of denials are due to a lack of sufficient medical evidence or mistakes on the application. An experienced disability lawyer can ensure that your application is accurate and complete.
Further, if you do face an initial denial, an attorney can help you navigate the complicated appeals process.