Are you unable to work due to a disability? If so, you may qualify for disability benefits.
However, you might not know which disability benefits program serves your needs. If this is the case for you, keep reading to learn more. This overview provides essential information about the main benefits for people with disabilities in the United States.
Short and Long-Term Disability
Short-term and long-term disability benefits are forms of insurance that provide income replacement to individuals who can’t work due to such factors as injury or illness. You may qualify for short-term or long-term disability benefits through your employer or your own policy.
Short-term disability benefits typically provide coverage for up to six months. They cover temporary disabilities, such as a serious illness or injury, providing a percentage of the employee's salary for the duration of the disability. The specific percentage and duration of coverage may vary depending on several factors.
Long-term disability benefits may provide coverage for years. They might even provide coverage until an employee reaches the age of retirement. These benefits cover more serious or long-lasting disabilities that prevent the employee from working for an extended period of time.
Medicaid and Medicare
Medicaid and Medicare are two different government-sponsored healthcare programs offering benefits to eligible individuals:
- Medicaid: Provides free or low-cost benefits for people with a disability. Income and other such factors determine eligibility for Medicaid. Eligibility requirements may also vary from one state to another.
- Medicare: A federal health insurance program that typically provides coverage to people who are 65 years or older, Medicare may also offer coverage to people with disabilities or certain medical conditions.
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers VA disability benefits to eligible veterans who have suffered a service-connected disability. These benefits provide financial compensation and support to veterans who have experienced physical or mental disabilities as a result of their military service.
To be eligible for VA disability benefits, a veteran must have a service-connected disability. That means that their military service must have caused or aggravated their disability. The disability may be the result of a specific event or a condition that developed over time.
Social Security Disability Benefits
The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers Social Security disability benefits to people with a disability who can’t work. Social Security disability benefits come in two main forms: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI):
- SSI provides financial assistance to individuals with low income and limited resources who can’t work due to a disability. To be eligible for SSI, an individual must meet certain income and asset requirements. They must also meet medical eligibility requirements. Factors such as income and living situation will determine the amount of SSI benefits someone receives.
- SSDI provides benefits to individuals who have worked and paid into the Social Security system, but now have a disability that prevents them from working. To be eligible for SSDI, an individual must have earned a certain number of work credits and have a medical condition that meets the SSA's definition of a disability per the SSA’s “Blue Book” resource.
Get Help From a Social Security Disability Lawyer
Are you considering applying for Social Security disability benefits or similar benefits? If so, you should strongly consider enlisting the help of a disability benefits attorney. This is because they can assist you in gathering the evidence necessary to show that you meet the eligibility requirements.
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