Question Of The Month: “I Paid Into It. Why Is Social Security Giving Me Such A Hard Time About Disability?”

December 2, 2023

At Nash Disability Law, this is a question we are asked about the Social Security Disability benefits process on a regular basis.

It’s completely understandable to take it personally when you receive a mountain of paperwork from Social Security, or when your claim is denied.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s not personal to Social Security.

Each year about two million Americans apply for either Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, so there really isn’t a way for the Social Security Administration (SSA) to have an individually-focused vendetta.

They send out the same paperwork to nearly everyone who applies for benefits, and the majority of claims are denied at the initial and reconsideration stages of the process.

This is true even if you have an extensive work history and paid your FICA taxes. Paying into the system is just one part of the disability benefits picture. It does not automatically qualify you for benefits even if you argue you have a disability and cannot work.

You must prove to Social Security that your disability prevents you from working at any job, and you must back up your proof with convincing medical evidence.

A helpful analogy is to compare Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) to other kinds of insurance such as car insurance. You pay into that year after year (and hope you never have to file a claim). You only collect auto insurance benefits when you have an accident and can provide evidence of damage to your vehicle.

Chicago disability attorney Tom Nash explains that “winning disability benefits is about getting the right information in front of the right people at the right time.”

The path to winning Social Security Disability benefits is difficult to navigate, but every applicant has to travel this road. It helps to have a skilled disability attorney by your side.

If you have a disabling injury or illness and your condition has made it impossible for you to hold a job, contact us at Nash Disability Law for a free evaluation of your situation.

Our Social Security Disability lawyers can help you navigate the complex SSA disability claims process, guiding you on the best path forward. We have offices in Chicago and Palos Hills, and we can help you avoid costly disability mistakes.