When you apply for Social Security Disability benefits, one of the details that you must provide is your disability onset date. Knowing the date is important. It can have an impact several aspects of the benefits you are applying for. To help you understand the importance, here is what you need to know about the onset date.
What Is the Disability Onset Date?
The disability onset date is basically the day that your medical condition first impacted your ability to work. The date is important because it can have an impact on whether you qualify for benefits. To determine your eligibility, the Social Security Administration, or SSA, looks at the number of years and months that you have worked.
The SSA assigns work credits to the number of years and months that are worked. To qualify for benefits, you need a certain number of work credits. If you were unable to work due to your disability and it cut into your work credits, you could be considered ineligible for benefits.
The disability onset date also helps to determine how much of a back payment you are qualified to receive. If you are entitled to receive past benefits because you were unable to work and had submitted a claim for benefits, the SSA will usually issue a one-time back payment that covers a certain period. The onset date is typically the date that is used to calculate back payments.
How Do You Choose the Disability Onset Date?
For many people, selecting the disability onset date is difficult. Many medical conditions cause gradual problem that affect a person's ability to work over time. For instance, carpal tunnel syndrome will likely make it more challenging to work over time and not result in an abrupt impairment that causes you to stop working.
Therefore, you might have to calculate the disability onset date based on other factors. One way is to tie the onset date to a major medical event. For instance, if you were hospitalized for your condition on January 21st, you could cite that day as the onset date. You could use your medical records to support your claim.
Regardless of the date you select, you need to ensure there is evidence to support your claim. The evidence needs to overwhelming point to your inability to work due to a medical impairment.
Before selecting an onset date, consult with an attorney who specializes in submitting disability claims. He or she can help with determining the date and work with you to complete the rest of the application. Contact a firm, like Horn & Kelley, PC Attorneys at Law, for more help.