Make the Most of Social Security and Medicare Benefits
If your loved one has reached retirement age, they may be receiving Social Security retirement benefits. If they are not yet retirement age, they may qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) provides income and other benefits to people who cannot work because they have a severe disability. SSDI is a federal insurance program. You become insured by the program by paying payroll taxes, FICA (Federal Insurance Contributions Act), during your working years. FICA taxes also pay for Social Security retirement benefits and Medicare. If your loved one paid FICA taxes, they may be eligible for SSDI.
To qualify for SSDI, your loved one must have a disability that has lasted or is expected to last at least one year or result in death. Check out our About SSDI section to find out more about SSDI, who qualifies and what kinds of benefits you can obtain if you qualify.
If you think your loved one may qualify for SSDI, apply as soon as possible. The application process for SSDI benefits can be long and grueling. There is a large backlog of applications, and people can wait months, even years, to receive benefits. Only 35 percent of applicants receive benefits at the initial application level. If you are denied disability benefits at the initial stage, you may file a disability appeal and receive an award of disability benefits at a later stage in the process. But time is ticking away while you wait.
Many people turn to professionals, such as Allsup, to represent them when they apply for SSDI. Allsup's disability experts understand the procedures and criteria that Social Security uses to evaluate disability claims. Allsup experts use this knowledge to build a strong and thorough disability claim for every customer we represent. We complete the forms, gather medical records, write briefs and guide you through every step of the process.
People who choose Allsup to represent them usually get their Social Security disability benefits faster. For example, 55 percent of Allsup customers receive benefits at the initial stage, compared with the national average of 35 percent. In the end, 98 percent of those who complete the SSDI process with Allsup receive SSDI benefits. Get a free disability evaluation for your loved one.
In addition to monthly income, another benefit of receiving SSDI is becoming eligible for Medicare 24 months after your date of entitlement to SSDI cash benefits. For some people, this is especially significant, since it can be difficult to find health insurance when you're not working and have a preexisting condition.
If your loved one qualifies for Medicare, either because they are 65 or older or because they're disabled, it's important to make the most of this benefit. Medicare plans can vary in what they cost and what they cover. Your loved one could pay thousands of dollars in extra out-of-pocket costs if they are in the wrong Medicare plan.
If you're helping your loved one choose their Medicare coverage, you'll soon discover how confusing it can be. Your loved one may have dozens of options, and it can feel overwhelming to sort through them all to find the coverage that's going to work best for their specific situation. Figuring out the Medicare maze can be more complicated than trying to do your own taxes.
If you want some help, you can turn to a Medicare plan selection service such as the Allsup Medicare Advisor®. With this fee-based service, we work with you one-on-one to help you choose the coverage that will best meet your loved one's needs. You'll gain the peace of mind of knowing that you've selected Medicare coverage that will take care of both your loved one's health and their finances.