Am I Eligible for Social Security Benefits?
Q: I was in a serious car accident several months ago. I spent five weeks in the hospital. I am just now beginning to walk again but I am on pain medications and in therapy several times a week. My doctors have not yet released me to return to work. I have been encouraged to file for disability benefits through Social Security. Am I eligible?
A: Yes, Social Security Disability law requires that you be disabled for at least 12 consecutive months to qualify for benefits. Even though you have not been disabled for 12 months yet, there is a good chance you will not be released to return to work within that 12 months. Social Security will evaluate your application when you apply after they receive and review your medical records. If it appears you are currently disabled, and that your disability will likely last 12 months, you may be granted disability benefits. If your disability ends before the 12 months are up, you are not eligible for benefits. However, if your disability ends after the 12 months, you are still eligible for a “closed period” of benefits from the time you became disabled until the time you were able to work. I recommend you contact your local Social Security office and begin the application process.
If you have questions, contact a legal professional who understand Social Security Disability law.