Can My Lawyer Help to Restore My Disability Benefits?
Your disability benefits may have been taken from you for a variety of reasons, such as the Social Security Administration (SSA) not being able to reach you, your medical condition improving or earning over a certain amount of money. You may be able to use the expedited reinstatement process to have your disability benefits restored more quickly.
The knowledgeable Phoenix Social Security Disability attorneys at the Dayes Law Firm can review your claim during a free, no-obligation consultation. They can discuss the process of expedited reinstatement and how your benefits may be restored.
Understanding Expedited Reinstatement
Expedited reinstatement is a process that is available to help restore disability benefits if a claimant’s benefits were stopped after he or she started to work and earned too much money and has since stopped earning more than the earnings limit.
This process allows claimants to restore their benefits without reapplying. If your request is approved, you can begin receiving your benefits much more quickly than if you had to restart the process with a new application.
Expedited reinstatement is granted on a provisional basis. You receive benefits for up to six months while the SSA considers your eligibility for reinstatement. The SSA will consider you disabled if you still have the same disability that originally qualified you for benefits, if your condition has not improved, and your income is below the substantial gainful activity limit.
If the SSA decides that you are not disabled, your expedited reinstatement payments will cease.
Eligibility for Expedited Reinstatement
The eligibility criteria for expedited reinstatement depend on whether you receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.
The substantial gainful activity (SGA) limit is $1,220 for non-blind claimants and $2,040 for blind recipients in 2019. If you started working and earned more than this amount and continued working following the end of a nine-month trial work period, you may lose your benefits.
You may qualify for expedited reinstatement if you meet the following criteria:
- Your earnings fell below the SGA level within five years of when your SSDI benefits stopped
- You stopped working or reduced your work because of the same disability for which you originally qualified for SSDI benefits
- Your medical condition has not improved since you applied for SSDI
You may lose your SSI benefits if your income exceeded the SSI income limit. You may be eligible for expedited reinstatement of your SSI benefits if you meet the following criteria:
- Your income falls below the SSI income limit within five years of your benefits stopping because you stopped working or reduced your working time because of your medical condition
- Your benefits were stopped because earnings put you above the SSI income limit
- You are considered disabled because of your medical condition
- You are considered unable to work at or above the SGA level
- You suffer from the same disability as you did when you were originally approved for SSI
- Your disability has not improved since your original application for SSI benefits
Time Limit to File for Expedited Reinstatement
To qualify for expedited reinstatement, you must apply within five years from the date your benefits were terminated. If your expedited reinstatement request is denied, there is a 60-day window to file your request for reconsideration.
Obtaining Provisional Disability Benefits
When you apply for expedited reinstatement, the SSA will pay provisional benefits while it evaluates your application for expedited reinstatement. These benefits are paid for up to six months, but they can stop before then if you receive an adverse decision about your expedited reinstatement benefits, you engage in SGA or you reach full retirement age. You are not required to repay these benefits if your application is denied.
Contact Us to Discuss Your Situation
If you would like to discuss whether you may qualify for expedited reinstatement, a knowledgeable attorney with the Dayes Law Firm can explain this information during a free, no-obligation consultation.
He or she can review your claim to determine if you may be eligible for these benefits. If you decide to move forward with an application for expedited reinstatement, we will only get paid if your application is approved.