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What you should know before filing for SSD

Suffering a permanent disability may limit your ability to earn a reasonable income. For example, if you have severe fibromyalgia that prevents you from working, you may have trouble meeting your living expenses. Fortunately, you may qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD). However, filing for these benefits can sometimes be difficult and confusing.

If you suffer from a debilitating disease or injury, you might be eligible for disability benefits. Before starting the filing process, consider speaking with a Houston area attorney for answers to your questions and help filing the necessary documents. Read further for more information on filing for Social Security Disability benefits.

General information required

The Social Security Administration office requires that you provide certain information and documentation when you apply for disability benefits. For example, you must provide the dates of any marriages and divorces that have occurred. You will also have to supply the birth dates and names of your spouse and children you have under the age of 18. If you were a military service member, you must also provide your discharge information.

The Administration will also require that your file certain financial information. Be prepared to provide copies of your prior year tax returns or W-2 statements. If you want to receive benefit checks through direct deposit, you will also have to give the Administration your bank account number and the electronic deposit routing number.

Required items for the disability report

In order to fill out your disability report, you will have to list the name and phone number of another individual that you have designated to speak with the Administration about your medical condition. In addition, you will have to give the Administration copies of medical records that are relevant to your case.

You must also fill out information concerning the previous five jobs you had in the 15 years before your condition rendered you unable to work. Furthermore, you will have to provide the claim number, name and contact information of any insurance company that processed a workers' compensation claim on your behalf.

Applying online

After you have all of the required information, you may be able to file for disability online. There are three sections you will have to complete: Disability Benefit Application, Adult Disability Report and Authorization to Disclose Information Form. The entire process could take approximately two hours to complete.

Applying in person

If you prefer to file for benefits in person, you can call the Social Security office to schedule an appointment. When you appear for your appointment, you may need additional documents to prove you are eligible for benefits. Bring the original copy of your birth certificate, your previously completed Disability Report, Authorization to Disclose Information Form, and your prior year tax return or employment documents.

If you are considering applying for disability benefits, you may need help completing the application and filing the claim. An experienced disability attorney can help you file the application correctly the first time and limit your chances of a denial.

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