We do not request reimbursement of costs
(such as repayment for obtaining medical records)
from veterans nor from people who suffer from multiple sclerosis.

Texas Disability Lawyer

Disability attorneys help clients navigate the complex process of pursuing disability benefits. The Chermol & Fishman, LLC team can bolster your claim and help you get the disability benefits you need by applying their knowledge and experience. Our Texas disability lawyer will help you understand the eligibility criteria, navigate the application process, gather documentation, and appeal a denial of benefits.

“Disability” refers to a physical or mental impairment substantially limiting one or more major life activities. To be eligible for Social Security disability benefits, a person’s impairment must be severe enough to prevent them from performing work for most employers. The specific criteria an applicant must meet depend on the types of benefits they are seeking, their financial situation, and their impairment.

Texas Disability Benefits: SSDI vs SSI

Texas residents may be  eligible to receive benefits through Social Security. The United States Social Security Administration (SSA) manages the Social Security program. The SSA offers two types of federal disability benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). 

Social Security Disability Insurance

Social Security Disability, sometimes referred to as SSDI, provides support to disabled individuals who have contributed to social security through payroll taxes. Individuals applying to receive SSDI benefits will need to meet the work history requirements and have a qualifying disability.

Supplemental Security Income

Supplemental Security Income benefits, or SSI, also provides financial assistance to disabled individuals. SSI applicants do not need to meet work history requirements and, to qualify, must not exceed a certain income threshold. 

Not sure whether you’re eligible to receive benefits? Consulting with a disability lawyer in Texas can help.

The Disability Benefits Application: How Do I Apply?

Applying for and receiving support can, unfortunately, take months. The exact process will depend on your situation and the type of support requested. 

In general, you will need to take the following steps:

  1. Determine Your Eligibility: The first thing you will need to do is to determine whether or not you are eligible for either SSDI. A Texas disability attorney can help you assess your eligibility for these programs.
  2. Prepare Your Documentation: Next, you will want to gather the required documents. Several documents must accompany your application and are needed to complete the required forms. These documents include your birth certificate, Social Security number, medical records, work history, and information from your medical providers.
  3. Complete the Application: Once you have your required documents, you can complete the required forms and file your application. It’s important to provide accurate information about your disability, work history, and medical treatment. Incomplete or inaccurate applications can cause delays or lead to denial.
  4. Submit Supporting Evidence: Evidence of your disabling condition must accompany your application. This includes medical records, test results, and documents from healthcare providers about your disability, and its impact on your ability to support yourself.
  5. Get a Medical Evaluation: After receiving your claim, the SSA may request a medical evaluation to assess your disability.
  6. Wait for Social Security’s Decision: After Social Security has received all of your information, they will review your application and determine if you qualify for disability benefits. A decision from the SSA can take several months.

If My Application is Denied, Can I Appeal?

If your claim is denied, you may be able to appeal the decision. Several levels of appeal are available, including:

  • Reconsideration
  • Administrative Hearing
  • SSA Appeals Council Review
  • Federal Courts

Your disability lawyer can help you understand your options for appeal and the appropriate steps to take with your benefits claim.

Who Can Apply for Disability Benefits in Texas?

Applying for Social Security disability benefits is a long, and sometimes confusing, process. In general, monthly SSDI support is available to individuals who are not able to work for a year or more because of their disability. Applicants may find it difficult to understand the criteria and requirements.

There are two main factors to qualifying for disability: whether you are disabled and your work history. 

Disability Determination

Social Security makes a disability determination based on whether or not a person can “engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA).” The SSA considers a person to be engaging in gainful activity if they are earning more than a certain monthly income limit. If your health issue prevents you from participating in SGA, you may be eligible to receive disability benefits. 

If you’re uncertain whether you may qualify for Social Security assistance, ask yourself the following questions: 

  1. Am I currently working?
  2. Is my condition serious and disabling?
  3. Is my condition found on the SSA’s list?
  4. Can I do the work I used to do?
  5. Can I do any other type of work?

Work History Requirement

Texas Disability LawyerAn important difference between SSDI and SSI is the work history requirements. To receive SSDI, you need a certain number of work credits. Work credits are earned and are based on your annual income. A working individual can earn up to 4 credits each year. 

Calculating the number of qualifying work credits can be complicated. The exact number of credits you will need depends on your age and how recently you worked.  

Unlike Social Security Disability, SSI does not require a work history and eligibility is based on a person’s financial resources. This means that there is a monthly income limit depending on the individual’s disability.  

Assistance from a skilled Texas disability attorney may help. Your lawyer can assess your health and financial situation and help you determine whether you qualify for SSDI or SSI. In the event your application is denied, your Texas disability lawyer can guide you through the appeals process. 

What Disabilities Does a Texas Disability Lawyer Handle?

The team at Chermol & Fishman handle a wide range of disability cases. Various physical and mental health issues can qualify for disability benefits. Specifically, the SSA uses this list of criteria to determine whether a health issue qualifies for support. An important component of the disability evaluation is the level of impairment caused by the condition.

If you are suffering from health issues that make it difficult to work, your Texas disability lawyer can evaluate whether you are eligible for benefits. Some common conditions include:

When Should I Hire a Texas Disability Attorney?

The sooner you can hire an attorney the better. Their assistance early on in the process can save you from common mistakes and mishaps that may lead to delays or denial of your disability claim. A disability lawyer will help you understand your eligibility, the documentation and evidence you need of your impairment, and correctly filing forms with Social Security.

If you need to appeal a denied disability claim, your disability lawyer can guide you through the appeal process. They will handle making the appeal, advocating on your behalf, and showing why you are entitled to receive benefits. 

How Much Does a Disability Lawyer Cost in Texas?

Under SSA rules, a disability attorney can charge up to 25% of past-due benefits. As of 2024, the maximum a lawyer can charge is capped at $7,200, with some exceptions. The exact costs of representation will depend on your case. 

Contact Chermol & Fishman, LLC for Help With Your Disability Benefits

Are you applying for disability? Perhaps your disability claim was denied? The experienced Texas disability attorneys at Chermol & Fishman, LLC can help. We can guide you through the process, explain Social Security’s requirements, help prepare your application, and gather evidence to support your claim. If your application is denied, our Texas disability lawyer will help you through the appeal process.

If you are struggling to receive benefits for your disability, the skilled disability attorneys at Chermol & Fishman, LLC are here. We understand the stress that applying for social security assistance can add to your situation. Whether you are applying for benefits or your claim was denied, contact us today.

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