Bill would expedite SSD benefit payments for terminally ill
A bill was recently introduced in the Senate that would eliminate the waiting period for SSD benefits for those with terminal illnesses.
September 05, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Bill would expedite SSD benefit payments for terminally ill
Article provided by Reyes & Reyes Law Firm, PLLC
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The worst news an individual can get at a doctor's office is the diagnosis of a terminal illness. Following such a diagnosis, the patient will typically be overwrought with emotions and may struggle to continue completing tasks necessary to cope after the diagnosis is made.
When a patient is dealing both with the effects of the illness and the devastating news, he or she should not have to simultaneously be concerned about how medical expenses and daily needs will be paid for going forward. Often, patients in such situations will not be able to work as their illness progresses. Consequently, Social Security disability is an appropriate choice for patients who have been diagnosed with terminal illnesses.
Unfortunately, for many patients in such situations, they never receive the benefits to which they are entitled. Luckily, three members of the U.S. Senate are hoping to change the rules regarding Social Security disability payments for those with terminal illnesses.
The proposed SSD legislation
Currently, when an individual applies for Social Security disability benefits, he or she must wait five months before the benefits will begin to be paid. For individuals with terminal illnesses, however, they may never receive the benefits to which they are entitled due to the waiting period.
As a result, three Senators recently introduced a bill -- called the Expedited Disability Insurance Payments for Terminally Ill Individuals Act of 2013 -- that would resolve the waiting period problem.
The bill proposes eliminating the five-month waiting period for those who have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Instead, eligible individuals would receive 50 percent of their monthly benefits during the first month, 75 percent during the second month and 100 percent of their benefits during subsequent months.
Under the proposed law, a person is considered to be terminally ill if he or she has been given just six months or less to live. For those who beat their diagnosis, the amount paid during the typical five-month waiting period would be deducted during the second year of SSD benefit payments.
The bill also provides that the individual must have been diagnosed as terminally ill by two separate doctors from different practices, in order to avoid fraud.
If you believe you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits, a skilled SSD attorney will be able to assist you. Seeking the advice of a legal professional will ensure your rights are protected when you apply for Social Security disability benefits.
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