If you suffer from a disability that prevents you from working in your previous job or one that is similar, you may be eligible for disability benefits through Social Security. However, applying for these benefits and gaining approval can take months.
There are certain conditions that are eligible for expedited payments, which means you can receive benefits while you wait for formal approval. You must meet certain medical and non-medical requirements to receive these payments.
Conditions and medical requirements necessary for eligibility
According to the Social Security Administration, you may be eligible for expedited presumptive payments if you apply for Supplemental Security Income with certain claims of disability or blindness. The SSA considers available evidence and the severity of the condition when making the decision. There are many conditions that may be eligible for presumptive payments, and some of them are:
- Total blindness or deafness
- Amputation of a leg
- Terminal illness with death expected within six months
- HIV or AIDS
- Immobility due to long-lasting condition
- Lou Gehrig’s disease
The SSA makes expedited payments for up to six months while you are waiting for a final determination on disability benefits.
Non-medical requirements for eligibility
If the Social Security Administration does not eventually approve a disability claim based on medical evidence, the person who received the expedited benefits is not responsible for paying these amounts back. However, if the reason for the denial was related to non-medical requirements, the claimant may need to repay some of the benefits.
According to U.S. News and World Report, one of these requirements is that a person needs to prove past employment in which he or she paid Social Security taxes. A fairly recent work history and a certain number of work credits are necessary for Social Security disability eligibility. Once the SSA approves disability benefits, it bases the specific payment amount on a calculation of the worker’s overall lifetime earnings.