A natural question for many people who qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits is whether such benefits ever end. The definition of a disability for SSD purposes is a medical condition that can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months. Some medical conditions are permanent, like a diagnosis of cancer. Other conditions may gradually improve with the passage of time and medical treatment. Nevertheless, the presence of a medical condition that will improve with time does not mean that you should not or will not qualify for benefits, it just means that eventually, the Social Security Administration (SSA) may assume you will improve to the point where you can eventually go back to work. Therefore, the SSA focuses more of its ongoing attention when it comes to assessing those who have been approved for benefits and whether or not they have improved to the point where they no longer qualify for benefits. This is primarily accomplished through a process that occurs on the front end of the SSD application process, when successful SSD applicants are classified into those whose conditions are expected to improve with time and treatment and those who are not.
For those who are expected to improve, the SSA will pay more attention to how such benefit recipients are doing and whether they continue to meet the criteria for receiving benefits. If at some point, the SSA decides it believes someone no longer qualifies to receive, then it will notify that person in writing of why it believes the person no longer qualifies for benefits, when it intends to terminate the person’s benefits. At that point, the SSD recipient whose benefits are potentially going to be terminated can appeal that decision, which is always a good decision, particularly if you are represented by an experienced Virginia SSD attorney like the attorneys of Kalfus & Nachman. This can substantially improve your chances of a successful appeal.
If I Am Approved for Benefits but My Condition is Expected to Improve, What Happens?
What happens when you apply for SSD benefits is that the SSA may approve your application for benefits, but it will classify your case as Medical Improvement Expected. What this means is that the SSA will review your case in 6-18 months to determine if you have improved to the point where you may no longer qualify for benefits. If you have a condition that typically improves with time, the SSA may be more likely to pay attention to your claim than someone who may not be expected to improve, who would instead be classified as Medical Improvement Not Expected when the person is approved for benefits.
What Happens if the SSA Intends to Terminate My SSD Benefits?
If the SSA plans to terminate your benefits because it believes you can return to work, then it will notify you in writing that it plans to terminate your benefit, when it intends to do so and why it believes you no longer meet the criteria to receive SSD benefits. Nevertheless, the important thing to know is that an SSD recipient whose benefits are going to be terminated has the right to appeal that termination. You should always appeal if the SSA informs you it intends to terminate your SSD benefits.
Talk to The Experienced Social Security Disability Attorneys at Kalfus & Nachman
The experienced SSD attorneys at Kalfus & Nachman have counseled many clients who may have received benefits for a condition that was eventually expected to improve such that our clients likely will not receive benefits forever. We also have successfully represented clients whose SSD benefits the SSA sought to terminate in appealing such a decision. If you live in the Norfolk, Hampton, Newport News, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach or Roanoke, Virginia, areas and need assistance determining if you qualify for the SSD benefits, what your expected monthly benefit would be if you qualify for benefits, filing your SSD application, or filing an appeal, please contact Kalfus & Nachman PC by phone at (855) 880-8163 or through the form on this page to schedule a free consultation today.