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How do I qualify for disability benefits in New Jersey?

Last week, we blogged about how according to the Social Security Administration, this month will be a record-breaking month in terms of the number of workers that applied for benefits under Social Security Disability. The ranks of workers of this month join the additional 8.8 million workers that currently collect disability benefits, according to the Social Security Administration.

While it is wonderful that individuals that are too ill to continue working and earning an income in New Jersey and elsewhere do have means available to them through these benefits, this number can skew the perception of some to make it seem as though securing these benefits is easy.

This is unfortunately not the case. There are several regulations that must be met and evidence that must be examined before an individual in New Jersey is approved to begin receiving Social Security Disability benefits for their illness or condition.

So what are these qualifications?

  • Primarily, the individual must meet the Social Security Administration's outline of being diagnosed as suffering with disabling mental or physical condition.
  • This condition must mean that the individual is unable to earn a living from their employment or be unable to adjust to a new employment.
  • Finally, the individual seeking benefits must have been, or anticipate being, out of work for one year.

Even if an individual does meet all of these qualifications for obtaining benefits, their claim can still be denied. When an individual desperately needs these benefits to provide for their well-being, they cannot always wait to go through the appeal process to being receiving benefits. Retaining experienced legal counsel can aid in mitigating the risk of a denied claim, or increase the chance that an appeal is successful in New Jersey.

Source: Investors.com, "Nearly 90,000 Apply For Disability, December Record," John Merline, Dec. 21, 2012

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