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North Carolina Social Security Disability Lawyers

If you can’t work because you have a disability and need help applying for benefits, contact the North Carolina SSD benefits law firm of DeMayo Law Offices. We can file a claim on your behalf or assist you in appealing a denied claim. Our team of experienced professionals has the resources, knowledge, and skills to handle your case effectively and ensure you receive the benefit payments you need from the Social Security Administration.

Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, is a government program that provides payments to people who are disabled and unable to maintain gainful employment. It’s a crucial insurance benefit for you and your family that could help you pay for daily expenses and enable you to get medical treatment for your conditions.

When you apply, there’s a specific procedure you need to follow and deadlines you can’t miss. Our North Carolina social security disability lawyers understand the regulations issued by the SSA and how to pursue claims effectively.

SSDI is for workers who paid into Social Security. When an injury, illness, or disability limits an individual’s ability to work, SSD is available to those who qualify.

Get the information you need to collect the benefits you deserve. Call the DeMayo Law Offices at (877) 333-1000 or contact us online today for a FREE consultation.

Do You Qualify for SSDI?

The evaluation process follows strict criteria to determine an applicant’s eligibility. The conditions evaluated by Social Security are included in the Administration’s Listing of Impairments. SSA analyzes the severity of a person’s conditions and the limitations a person has as a result of those severe conditions. Types of conditions in the SSA’s Listing of Impairments include:

Musculoskeletal disorders

spine disorders, amputation(s), major fractures, osteoarthritis, etc.

Special senses and speech disorders

blindness, hearing loss, or loss of speech due to any cause

Respiratory disorders

chronic bronchitis, cystic fibrosis, lung transplantation, etc.

Cardiovascular disorders

chronic heart failure, recurrent arrhythmias, heart transplant, etc.

Digestive disorders

gastrointestinal hemorrhage, liver dysfunction, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), etc.

Genitourinary system disorders

kidney disease, kidney transplant, etc.

Skin disorders

Ichthyosis, dermatitis, burns, etc.

Neurological disorders

epilepsy, parkinsonian syndrome, multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), traumatic brain injury (TBI), etc.

Mental disorders

There are currently 11 categories of mental disorders. Click here for a complete list.


lymphoma, leukemia, breast cancer, prostate cancer, etc.

Immune system disorders

lupus, systemic sclerosis (scleroderma), inflammatory arthritis, etc.

Disability evaluation is a complex process that involves multiple agencies, medical professionals, and sometimes an administrative law judge should a claim determination be disputed.

If you’re unable to work because of an illness, injury, or disability, you may be entitled to SSDI.

At DeMayo Law Offices, we understand how important SSD payments can be for injured workers and their families. We’re proud to support members of our community in Charlotte, Hickory, Monroe, and other nearby areas in North Carolina.

Call our North Carolina social security disability law firm today at (877) 333-1000 or contact us online.

North Carolina’s Disability Backlog

According to the Social Security Administration, 5.6 percent of North Carolina’s population receive social security disability payments.

Unfortunately, there are only a handful of social security administrative law judges overseeing thousands of disability claims.

North Carolina applicants wait, on average, more than 20 months to receive a hearing. And more than 50 percent of all initial disability claims are denied.

Rejected claims are extremely common and usually the result of missing records, improper filling, or lack of legal advocacy.

In many cases, people are initially rejected and forced to appeal the decision several times before their disability claim is approved. This can result in significant financial strain for injured workers and their families.

If your claim is denied at the Initial and Reconsideration stages, you can request a hearing with the Office of Hearings Operations (OHO). There are four North Carolina offices located in Charlotte, Greensboro, Raleigh, and Fayetteville.

The appeals process can take over a year to complete and may require the review of medical records to show that the disability does, in fact, prevent you from performing gainful work activity.

To expedite the appeals process, it’s best to contact an experienced Social Security Disability law office in North Carolina.

Do you need help applying for SSDI? Call DeMayo Law Offices today at (877) 333-1000.

Social Security Disability Payments Explained

SSDI benefits are earned through payroll tax contributions. Your personal contributions are calculated into credits, and credits are used to calculate eligibility and payment amounts.

Employees can earn up to four credits per year or one credit per quarter. There are three eligibility requirements to collect social security disability:

  1. The worker must be disabled for five months before they become financially eligible to receive benefits;
  2. Employees must have between 6 and 40 earned credits (depending on age); and
  3. The worker needs to have earned at least 20 credits within 40 calendar quarters that ends when the disability began.

If you are eligible for SSDI benefits, there is a five-month waiting period before SSA will start your benefits. SSA will pay your benefit for the sixth full month after the date the agency finds your disability began.

SSDI payments are calculated based on a worker’s previous earnings or the average indexed monthly earnings (AIME): this calculation is an average of the worker’s income throughout their employment history.

Eligible workers receive benefits equal to the primary insurance amount (PIA). PIA is adjusted annually per changes to the national wage average and the consumer price index.

In 2017, the average SSD recipient received $1,171 per month or about $14,000 a year.

What’s Supplemental Security Income?

In rare cases, SSDI applicants may also be eligible for Supplementary Security Income (SSI). Unlike SSD, SSI is a need-based program. SSDI applicants may be eligible for SSI if they qualify for SSDI and are eligible for low monthly benefits. To qualify for supplemental security income benefits, you must be at least 65 years of age, blind, or disabled, and have a limited income, limited resources, and be a U.S. citizen or naturalized citizen of the United States.

SSI Disability

A qualifying disability for SSI is a mental or physical impairment that:

  • Causes an inability to maintain gainful employment; and
  • Is likely to result in death; or
  • Lasted or could last continually for at least twelve months.

Children could receive SSI benefits if they have a physical or mental impairment that:

  • Results in severe limitations; and
  • Is likely to result in death; or
  • Has lasted or could last for a minimum of twelve consecutive months.

SSI for Limited Income

Eligibility mostly depends on a person’s income. If your income is too high, your benefits could get reduced, or your claim for SSI benefits could get denied. The Social Security Administration determines your total income from different sources, such as:

  • Earned income: Wages, net earnings from being self-employed, and sheltered workshop payments.
  • Unearned income: Income you didn’t earn, such as pensions, unemployment benefits, interest income, Social Security benefits, state disability payments, and cash your friends or family gifted to you.
  • In-kind income: Shelter or food given to you for free or less than the fair market value.
  • Deemed income: The income of your live-in spouse, live-in parent, or a sponsor (if you’re an alien).

Factors that don’t count as income include:

  • Income tax refunds
  • The first $20 of your monthly income
  • Food stamps
  • Shelter provided by a nonprofit organization
  • Loans you have to repay
  • Most home energy assistance programs, such as National Grid
  • Small amounts of irregular income

SSI for Limited Resources

Limited resources refer to various assets that are worth less than $2,000 if you’re an individual and less than $3,000 for a couple. Eligible assets include:

  • Land
  • Cash
  • Personal property
  • Vehicles
  • Bank accounts, U.S. savings bonds, and stocks
  • Life insurance
  • Possessions you can use for food or shelter, or that you could convert to cash
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Reasons Your Social Security Disability Was Denied

The reasons the Social Security Administration denies claims for SSDI typically vary from one claim to the next. However, there are five major reasons they might issue a denial. These include:

  1. Lack of medical evidence – You must submit substantial medical evidence that you have a disability and can’t maintain employment in any type of job. If your doctor’s medical records don’t include information about the specific disability you claim to have, your claim could get denied. You should include a physician’s written statement detailing your disabling condition and why it prevents you from returning to work.
  2. Previously denied claim – Many people will resubmit their original claim if they receive a denial letter. The Social Security Administration office will likely look at it and quickly deny it because they’ll see that you already tried to apply before. Instead of resubmitting your application, you should go through the appeals process.
  3. Failure to follow treatment plans – Your doctor will refer you for specific treatment you will need for your condition or illness. If you don’t follow their orders, the person reviewing your application will assume your injury isn’t severe. Undergoing medical evaluations and treatment from different doctors provides a record of your conditions and how you manage your symptoms. Without medical records, the Social Security Administration representative won’t be able to confirm the disability you have and how it affects your daily life.
  4. Your income – If you’re applying for Supplemental Security Income benefits, you need to earn below a certain amount to qualify. If you earn above the limit or can work full-time, you won’t be able to receive benefits.
  5. Failure to cooperate with the Social Security representative – Even if you don’t like the person handling your claim or don’t want to deal with the different steps of the procedure, you should still speak to them regularly and do what they ask. Submit documentation they request, return their calls, and show up for independent medical exams they require you to attend.

Frequently Asked Questions about Social Security Disability

What is Social Security Disability?

Social Security Disability is a government program designed to provide disabled people with compensation so that they can live a substantive life. In order to qualify for social security disability, you must have been a working citizen and pay social security tax for a specific period of time prior to becoming disabled.

When should I begin the application process for getting my social security disability?

If you are injured or believe that you will be unable to work for one year or more, you should begin the application process as soon as possible. You are able to file for social security disability the day you become disabled. Often times, a hospital worker can assist you with getting in contact with the Social Security Administration.

Why do I need a social security disability lawyer?

Although anybody is able to apply for social security disability and appeal any decision made about their application, hiring an experienced DeMayo Law Offices social security disability lawyer can make a huge difference in gaining social security disability benefits in a timely manner. It has been shown that people who hire Social Security Disability lawyers to help them with the application and appeal process have a greater chance at receiving social security disability.

What is the Social Security Administration's definition of disability?

According to the Social Security Administration, a person who is disabled is unable to obtain substantial gainful activity or employment because they are either mentally or physically impaired for a period no less than 12 months. If you have a disability, but you are still able to earn $700 per month, you will generally be unable to receive social security disability.

What can I do if I am denied social security disability benefits after I apply?

Many people are denied social security disability the first time they apply. However, if you are denied your social security disability, you can appeal the decision. The appeals process would continue in an appeals court.

Although you are able to defend yourself in the social security disability appeal process, you are much more likely to gain your social security disability if you hire an experienced DeMayo Law Offices Social Security Disability lawyer.

What happens if I win my social security disability appeal?

If you win your social security disability appeal, the judge will award you the social security disability benefits that you would have been receiving from the point at which they determine you were disabled. Depending on how long you have been disabled and how long the appeals process has taken, this amount can be substantial.

Find Out How DeMayo Law Offices Can Help You with your SSDI or SSI Claim

At DeMayo Law Offices, we care about our clients. We dedicate our time, attention, and resources to disabled individuals who can’t earn a living to support themselves and their families. When you hire us, we’ll make sure that you’re a priority. We’ll diligently work on your case and fight hard to secure the benefits you rightfully deserve.

We understand the financial and emotional strain this type of situation can cause. We will provide you with the legal services you need to ensure you receive benefits for your disability. We can help handle every step of the process from filing the claim to confirming when you can expect to receive payments.

We take cases on contingency, so you don’t have to worry about the additional financial burden of hiring an attorney. We don’t expect any upfront fees or costs while we’re working on your case. If you don’t get paid, we don’t get paid.

If you are disabled and have been denied social security disability, call DeMayo Law Offices at (877) 333-1000, or contact us online for a free consultation.