Should I Apply for Private Disability Benefits?

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Should I Apply for Private Disability Benefits?

You have probably heard about filing for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA), but you may not have heard as much about private disability insurance and how this works. There are certain differences between government and private disability programs. Knowing these differences could potentially make a difference in your outcomes. If you have questions about how to apply or if you have encountered obstacles along the way, then consider contacting a Philadelphia individual disability insurance lawyer for assistance. 

What Are Private Disability Benefits?

Private disability benefits are financial benefits offered by an independent non-government funded organization. These organizations consist of commercial insurers that come with a variety of plans, requirements, and benefits. Researching the private disability insurance organization you plan on applying for is key to make sure this program fits your needs.

There are certain benefits of choosing a private disability insurance company over SSA disability benefits programs. Private disability insurance programs offer benefits for partial disabilities, Should I Apply for Private Disability Benefits?whereas SSA programs have stricter requirements. For example, to receive SSA program benefits, you need to meet one or more of these requirements:

  • Five years of work experience
  • A disability that is expected to last a year
  • A disability that will lead to an early death
  • The disability must completely impair your ability to work
  • Your disability cannot be partial

Private disability insurance also has some limitations compared to SSA programs. While SSA benefits can pay you indefinitely, many private disability benefits programs have set limits on how long they will pay you. This means that despite your disability not improving, your disability benefits could cease after a certain time. 

Choosing the Right Disability Program for You

Within private insurance disability programs, there are different types of private disability insurance. Differentiating between these types is important for receiving the disability benefits you need. These types of insurance are not that different from SSA programs and include:

  • Short-term disability benefits
  • Long-term disability benefits

Application requirements and the benefits you could receive vary depending on which program you choose. Short-term disability benefits are for people who plan on working again in the future and because of this, this program only offers temporary income replacement. This income replacement covers a portion of your lost income, not all of your income. The presumption is that you are still working or planning on working, but need additional financial assistance.

Long-term disability benefits are for people who cannot return to work because of a major or progressive disability like Multiple Sclerosis. To receive long-term benefits, you may be required to also apply for Social Security disability benefits within six months after your private benefits start.  

Individual Disability Insurance Attorney in Philadelphia 

Choosing whether to apply for private or government disability benefits based on your situation can be an arduous decision to make. Consider hiring a Philadelphia disability lawyer for advice on this. You can contact Edelstein & Nelson at 800-887-4529 for a consultation today. A disability benefits lawyer can help you figure out which program might work best for your unique circumstances.