Indiana Serious Injury Lawyer discusses Social Security Disability and your Serious Injury Case
The question always arise, in my initial consultation with either a seriously injured Hoosier, or their family, “Should we file for Social Security Disability Benefits now or should we wait until the claim against the person who hurt me is completed?” My answer is based on twenty three years of experience in representing seriously injured Hoosiers against the people whose negligence caused their injuries and my twenty three years of experience representing disabled Hoosiers in their claim before the Social Security Administration. If you are injured seriously enough so that you cannot work, you should file for benefits immediately. This is not to say that you will be entitled to benefits from the Social Security Administration, hopefully you will not. You see, in order to be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits, your disability must be expected to last more than twelve months. It is my hope that you will be healed and back to work before that twelve months. It is my experience that Hoosiers are generally happier to be back at it, productive and working. They earn more money and are generally happier to be back to work.
Most of the time it is impossible to know early on if your serious injuries, such as a spinal cord injury resulting in paraplegia, or quadriplegia, brain injury, broken bones, burns etc., will heal in twelve months and if they do, whether you will be able to get back to work. This is true regardless of whether your injuries are caused by a drunk driving accident, a construction accident or even an semi tractor-trailer accident. So it is vitally important to apply for benefits now. There is no penalty for dismissing your claim later if you are able to get back to work. The main reason I encourage early filing is because the application process takes a long time. It will take three to four months just to get a response to your application. Even then close to 80% of all initial applications are denied. Most people are approved for benefits by an administrative law judge. It can take two years to get a hearing before a Judge. So you can see that can be very important to file early. The social security claim should have no impact on your serious injury claim.