Having enough money to pay your bills is essential, but not all of us are medically capable of working. What happens when a physical or mental condition prevents you from earning a living wage? You can file a claim for Social Security disability benefits, which can include benefits for the disabling effects of work-related or non-work related hip arthritis. And our experienced attorneys at Petro Cohen, P.C. can help you obtain the benefits you need.
How Does Work-Related Hip Arthritis Develop?
There are two main types of arthritis: inflammatory arthritis and osteoarthritis. Inflammatory arthritis is an immune disorder. Osteoarthritis is often known as “wear and tear” arthritis, and you can easily develop the debilitating condition from work. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that osteoarthritis affects more than 32 million adults in the United States frequently in the hips, knees, and hands.
Do you have hip arthritis? Does your work involve tasks that cause repetitive stress to your hip joint (bending, squatting, twisting, etc.)? If so, there is a likelihood that you have hip arthritis because of work.
How Do I Obtain Social Security Benefits for My Hip Arthritis?
If your hip arthritis prevents you from working, you can file a claim for benefits with the Social Security Administration (SSA). You can apply to receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. For either type of benefit, you must meet certain medical and non-medical requirements.
Non-Medical Requirements for SSDI Benefits
To qualify for SSDI benefits, you normally need to have 40 work credits, and you need to have earned at least 20 work credits within the last 10 years. The number of work credits you have depends on how much money you have earned. The dollar amount of one credit changes from year to year, and you cannot earn more than four credits in a year.
Non-Medical Requirements for SSI Benefits
To receive SSI benefits, you must have limited resources and limited income. Generally, you must also reside in the U.S. (or certain territories) and be a U.S. citizen or non-citizen who meets certain immigration criteria. Additionally, you cannot receive SSI if you are incarcerated, institutionalized, or absent from the U.S. for a calendar month or more.
The SSA looks at several assets to determine whether you have the financial need to receive SSI benefits. These assets are called “countable assets.” If you are a single person or a child, you cannot receive SSI if you have more than $2,000 in countable assets. If you are part of a couple, you cannot receive SSI if you have more than $3,000 in countable assets. Understanding which of your assets count and whether they are within limits can be tricky. Hiring a Social Security attorney can give you the best chance of receiving the benefits you deserve.
Once you prove that you fulfill the non-medical requirements to receive benefits in your hip arthritis disability claim, you need to prove that you have a disability that qualifies. Be prepared to consult with doctors and present medical records and doctor’s opinions as to your ability to work for this part.
Medical Requirements for SSDI and SSI Hip Arthritis Claims
If you are an adult individual applying for SSDI or SSI, you must prove that your condition renders you disabled. When making this determination, the SSA looks at:
- Whether your condition prevents you from engaging in substantial gainful activity;
- Whether your condition prevents you from performing your job;
- Whether your condition prevents you from finding a new job; and
- Whether your condition is expected to last for at least a year or result in death.
To prove these elements, you need to provide the SSA with “objective medical evidence” of your impairment from an “acceptable medical source.” Sufficient medical proof of disabling hip arthritis will likely include medical imaging, doctor reports with impairment ratings, medication lists, and hospital records.
You also need to prove how your impairment limits your ability to work. Your evidence can include:
- Education records;
- Testimony from family, friends, and caregivers;
- Job descriptions;
- Your testimony;
- Employer testimony;
- Employment records;
- Records from welfare agencies; and
- Testimony from neighbors and clergy.
You must provide relevant information to the SSA on an ongoing basis until they make a decision.
Applying for Social Security disability benefits is a complex and time-consuming process. It is best to hire a lawyer for your hip arthritis claim.
Trust Petro Cohen for Your WEAR and TEAR Claim
Petro Cohen, P.C. has assisted injured workers in South Jersey for decades with an emphasis on WEAR and TEAR™, or repetitive stress injuries. The firm’s Workers’ Compensation Department has more than 100 years of combined experience, among Department Head and Senior Partner Frank Petro, Partners Suzanne Holz Meola, and Terri Hiles, and attorneys Daniel Rosenthal and Sam Scimeca. Working together with you, they will ensure you receive the medical treatment you need and the compensation you deserve. Petro Cohen, P.C. has offices to serve you in Northfield, Cape May Court House, Cherry Hill, and Hamilton, NJ. To determine if you may have a potential workers’ comp and/or personal injury case, schedule your free and confidential consultation with a Petro Cohen, P.C. attorney by calling 888-675-7607. You can contact us through our online form or via 24/7 live chat at PetroCohen.com.