What is a Closed-Period Disability Claim?
Not all claims for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits are indefinite. You might need help paying your bills for only a few months while you’re recovering from a procedure, or after healing from an injury or illness that took you out of work for a while. Even if you know you’ll heal, or were out of work for a while but are ready to go back, you may still have a right to apply for SSDI benefits. Read on to learn more about closed-period disability claims, and speak with an experienced lawyer about applying for SSDI benefits.
What is a Closed-Period Claim?
Many claims for SSDI benefits are filed when an individual doesn’t know if they’ll ever go back to full-time work. Perhaps that person has suffered from a disabling on-the-job injury that doctors have said will never completely heal, or they’re suffering from cancer and don’t know whether treatments will work. Since these applicants don’t know if they’ll ever go back to work, they plan to collect SSDI benefits for an indefinite period. These are known as open-period claims.
Some applicants have reason to know when they’ll be able to go back to work. For example, a warehouse worker may need surgery on his back. His doctor has said that he should be able to complete rehabilitation after that surgery within about 15 months. This person could apply for SSDI benefits, using his doctor’s opinion as support for his claim.
Claims can be submitted retroactively
In some cases, an applicant for benefits may have already gone back to work when they file a claim. Let’s say a worker had cancer and was unable to work while they completed chemotherapy treatments. After 19 months, the worker returned to the job, but racked up thousands of dollars in living expenses on their credit card while they were sick. That person can submit an application for SSDI benefits after their period of disability has closed. Sometimes, closed claims are more likely to have their claims approved, since the Social Security Administration knows exactly how much they’ll be paying out in benefits.
In order to qualify to collect SSDI benefits under a closed-period claim, the applicant must have been or must anticipate being unable to work for at least 12 months. Claimants have 14 months from the end of their disability to apply for benefits. Closed-period claimants will still be subjected to the up-to-five-month waiting period that applies to all SSDI claims. That means that, if an applicant submits a claim for 14 months spent off work, they might only receive nine months’ worth of benefits.
If you need help getting the benefits you deserve after an injury in Alabama, contact the seasoned and dedicated Montgomery SSDI benefits lawyers at the Dansby Law Firm for a consultation on your case, at 334-834-7001.