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Social Security disability change could be debilitating

The process of applying for Social Security Disability Insurance can take years to complete. Under current law, Social Security disability recipients are subject to periodic reviews that determine their continuing eligibility to receive benefits. Under a proposed new law, this review would occur every two years. Many people receiving benefits in Florida may have difficulty complying with this requirement.

A woman in Westmoreland City had to submit to a continuing eligibility review last year. The woman suffers from a traumatic brain injury and has difficulty filling out forms. She did complete the review with the assistance of a free legal service. She receives $783 a month as her benefit and that is her only income. More frequent reviews could pose a hardship and she fears that could lead to her losing her eligibility.

The process of applying for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits is very complex and less than 40% of applicants typically qualify for benefits. While the application process can take years, the eligibility review itself can drag into months and even years. It is believed that increasing the frequency of reviews will lead to a decrease in fraudulent claims.

Many people in Florida who are receiving Social Security disability are living on that as their only source of income. A person in Florida in such a situation who is faced with a disability review may wish to seek the counsel of a legal professional experienced in dealing with Social Security law. A lawyer can review an individual's circumstances and advise one on what options may be available. A person dealing with a severe disability should not have to struggle alone.

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