A live transplant is a serious medical condition that is performed at the end stage of acute liver disease. You might have to remain in intensive care for several days after the complicated medical procedure, as well as spend an additional one to two weeks in a regular hospital bed. The recovery process can take months and, in some cases, receiving a new liver makes it impossible for a return to work. This is especially true for high stress jobs that produce a lot of adrenaline. Where do you turn for financial support after a liver transplant?
The answer is by relying on the Social Security Administration (SSA) for help.
Filing a Disability Claim with the SSA
If you received a liver transplant, the road to recovery is full of obstacles. From rehabilitation to dealing with health issues, your focus is more on getting better than working full-time. The SSA runs a benefits program called Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), which represents a work-based application process that can end up with an applicant receiving money to pay for lost wages and medical costs. To qualify for SSDI, you must meet the minimum threshold established by the SSA for paying taxes. The SSA calculates taxes by issuing credits, which Americans can receive up to four per year. With age also a factor, you have to collect a certain number of tax credits to qualify for SSDI benefits. The SSA rolls over tax credit calculations over 10-year periods.
Know What’s in the Blue Book
How does the SSA define the standards for meeting SSDI benefits eligibility? The answer lies within a resource called the Blue Book. The Blue Book lists every disease and illness that qualifies Americans to receive disability benefits. Since the SSA lists a liver transplant in the Blue Book, you have passed step one for determining whether you qualify for SSDI benefits. You also have to possess symptoms that prohibit you from working. The medical criteria used to determine symptoms eligibility is difficult to understand, which means working with a state licensed disability attorney is a good idea.
Overview of SSDI Benefits
Just like every other federal government agency, the SSA has to distribute a finite amount of money to a large base of SSDI applicants. This means the SSA uses a detailed review process to determine the validity of each SSDI claim. Several healthcare and vocational experts provide input on each application. If your claim for benefits to cover the costs associated with a liver transplant receive approval, you can expect to receive compensation that matches the money you earned when you worked a full-time job. The SSA sends out SSDI benefits one time a month to qualified applicants.
How to Apply for SSDI Benefits
You have several options for how you apply for SSDI benefits. The United States Postal Service (USPS) is an option, but it represents an option that takes longer than other options. If you go through the USPS, make sure to send your application via certified mail to confirm the SSA received it. You also can apply at the nearest SSA office, which means your application receives almost immediate attention because it goes into the review system withing minutes after handing the application over to an SSA representative. By far the fastest way to start the SSDI benefits application process is to visit the SSA website and apply on the SSDI benefits application page.