Social Security Disability J.J. Can Help

Pensacola Social Security Disability Lawyers

Social Security Disability Insurance & Supplemental Security Income

Social Security disability (SSD) is a government program that provides financial benefits to those who cannot work due to a disability or disabling condition. There are two main SSD programs: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While SSDI is available to qualifying individuals who have earned sufficient work credits, SSI is income-based, meaning it is possible to qualify for benefits despite the absence of a work history. 

If you are seeking SSD benefits, have had your SSDI or SSI application denied, or need assistance with any other SSD matter, reach out to the Law Office of J.J. Talbott team. With decades of experience and a long history of success, our Pensacola Social Security disability attorneys have what it takes to effectively advocate for you. We genuinely care about the people we serve and are committed to helping you navigate the legal process with as little stress as possible.

Contact our firm online or by phone at (850) 695-8331 today to learn more about how our SSD attorneys can help you with your claim. 

Social Security Disability Insurance 

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) was designed to help people who cannot work due to an injury, illness, or another disabling condition. To be eligible for SSDI, you must have a qualifying condition and you must have earned enough “work credits” by working long enough and recently enough, earning income on which you paid Social Security taxes. The number of work credits you need to qualify for SSDI depend on the age at which your disability began. 

What Does the Social Security Administration Consider a “Disability?”

To qualify for SSDI, you must have a condition that meets the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) strict definition of a “disability.”

To be considered a disability according to the SSA, your injury or medical condition must: 

  • Prevent you from engaging in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) 
  • Prevent you from performing the work you did before or performing modified work 
  • Last or be expected to last for at least one year or result in death 

The SSA has a “Listing of Impairments” that includes most physical and mental conditions that meet these criteria. If your injury or condition is not listed on the Listing of Impairments, this does not mean that you are automatically disqualified from receiving SSDI benefits. Instead, you will have to prove that your injury or condition is similar to one of the ones listed or otherwise represents a “qualifying condition.” 

How Are SSDI Benefits Calculated? 

The Social Security Administration (SSA) uses a calculator to determine how much a qualifying individual will receive in SSDI benefits. Typically, benefits are paid on a monthly basis and are based on average covered earnings over time, or “average indexed monthly earnings” (AIME). 

Generally speaking, SSDI benefits range from about $800 to $1,800 per month, though this varies significantly depending on numerous factors. Additionally, monthly SSDI benefits are limited to a maximum amount set each year. In 2022, the maximum monthly SSDI benefit is $3,345 per month. 

What to Do If Your SSD Claim Is Denied 

Unfortunately, most first-time Social Security disability claims are denied. If your SSD claim has been denied, you have the right to appeal. In fact, it is strongly recommended that you appeal the denial rather than restart the claims process, as your chances of success are much higher. 

It is important that you work with an experienced attorney if your SSD claim has been denied. The appeals process can be lengthy and confusing; you want a lawyer by your side who knows the process and who can protect your rights. You will likely be required to attend a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ), and an attorney can help you prepare for this hearing, as well as meet all other applicable deadlines and requirements. 

  • Am I entitled to “double time” or “time and a half” for working on holidays?

    The Fair Labor Standards Act does not require an employer to pay an employee “double time” or “time and a half” for working on holidays. Additionally, an employee is not entitled to additional pay under the FLSA for weekend or night work. However, an employer can separately contract with their employees to offer this additional pay.

  • Am I entitled to mileage for driving back and forth to the doctor?

    If an employee has a valid workers’ compensation claim, they are entitled to be paid mileage to and from all medical appointments. However, the employee must keep a list of the dates that they went to the doctor and the number of miles which they traveled.

    This information should be submitted to the insurance carrier or your attorney who will submit it to the carrier on a regular basis. While medical mileage may not add up to a lot of money, it does help compensate the employee for having to drive to the doctor. Additionally, it keeps your workers’ compensation claim open. Please note that if you do not have a vehicle or you’re not able to drive, then the insurance company is required to provide you transportation, you just have to request it.

  • Am I exempt from the overtime requirements if I’m paid a salary instead of hourly?

    Not necessarily. This is a common misconception held by employees and their employers. It is true that in order to fall under one of the white-collar exemptions as an executive, administrative or professional employee, you must be paid on a salary basis of at least $455 per week. However, there are other requirements in addition to the salary basis test. For each category of exemption, the employee must meet certain criteria to be exempt. See our page on Overtime Exemptions for more information.

How the SSD Attorneys at the Law Office of J.J. Talbott Can Help 

Applying for Social Security disability benefits, appealing a denied claim, and simply navigating the SSD system can be extremely difficult without the help of a knowledgeable lawyer. At the Law Office of J.J. Talbott, we truly care about our clients and are committed to doing everything we can to achieve the best possible outcomes in their cases. 

As your legal team, we will be there to guide you and advocate for you throughout the process. We recognize that this is a very stressful time in your life, which is why we handle everything from gathering and submitting paperwork to communicating with SSA representatives so that you do not have to. 

We return all phone calls within 24 hours and remain consistently available to our clients. When you hire the Law Office of J.J. Talbott, you do not pay any upfront or out-of-pocket expenses; we only collect legal fees if/when we recover a favorable result for you.

Call us today at (850) 695-8331 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our Social Security disability lawyers in Pensacola. 

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Supplemental Security Income 

The purpose of the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is to provide qualifying individuals with funds for basic needs, such as food, clothing, and shelter. Unlike SSDI, SSI is not based on earnings over time. You do not need to earn any work credits to qualify for SSI, meaning you can receive SSI benefits even if you have never worked due to your disability. 

Instead, SSI is income-based. This means that benefits are generally only available to individuals or couples who meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) income threshold. If you make too much money, you do not qualify for SSI. 

How to Qualify for SSI 

To qualify for SSI benefits, you must be at least one of the following:

  • Disabled 
  • Blind
  • 65 years old or older

Additionally, you must: 

  • Have limited income and resources 
  • Be a U.S. citizen or a qualifying alien 
  • Reside in one of the 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., or the Northern Mariana Islands
  • Not leave the country for one full calendar month or for at least 30 consecutive days 
  • Not be confined to a government-funded institution, such as a prison or hospital 

There may be other criteria required to qualify for SSI benefits. We recommend that you seek assistance from the knowledgeable Social Security disability lawyers at the Law Office of J.J. Talbott for help determining whether you are eligible for benefits. 

How to Apply for SSI Benefits 

You can request an appointment to apply for SSI benefits on the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) website. The process of requesting an appointment takes about 5 to 10 minutes and requires you to provide certain information, such as your name, date of birth, Social Security number, mailing address, phone number, and email address. 

After completing the online request, you will be contacted by a Social Security representative to schedule an appointment. If you cannot request an appointment online, you can also call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) between 8:00 am and 7:00 pm, Monday through Friday. 

If you need help applying for SSI benefits, do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of J.J. Talbott team. We are happy to assist you with this process, as well as all Social Security disability-related matters.

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A Lawyer Who Cares

Whether you’re one of the 250,000+ Floridians injured in an auto accident each year, or you’ve suffered an injury at work and your employer’s insurance company is not co-operating, the Law Office of J.J. Talbott can help get you the compensation you deserve. Founder, J.J. Talbott is among the 1% of trial lawyers in the United States who have won multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements.

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