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No More Paper Checks for Social Security Disability Recipients

Check_06042014The Social Security Administration (SSA) says it will no longer have the option of sending paper checks to Social Security beneficiaries starting on March 1, 2013.

The U.S. Department of Treasury had ruled to gradually phase out paper checks for federal benefit payments in December 2010. People newly applying to receive federal benefits had to select to receive their benefits electronically. March 1, 2013 is the final deadline for all remaining federal check recipients to receive their benefits electronically. The Treasury Department reported that 5 million checks continue to be mailed. The switch from paper checks will save American taxpayers $1 billion over the next 10 years.

Beneficiaries will need to have the following in order to switch to electronic payments:

• Social Security number,
• 12-digit benefit check number (located on the upper right hand corner of the check),
• amount of the beneficiaries most recent check,
• bank routing number and
• bank account number.

Beneficiaries will have the option of choosing between having their money direct deposited into their bank account or deposited onto a Direct Express debit MasterCard.

"If you or a loved one still receives paper checks for your benefit payments, now is the time to switch. It's free and easy - just call 1-800-333-1795 or visit," said David Lebryk, commissioner of the Treasury Department's Financial Management Service.

Social Security Administration Adds 35 More Compassionate Allowance Conditions for Fast-Tracking Disability Benefits

The Social Security Administration announced the addition of 35 more compassionate allowance conditions to fast-track the process for applying for disability benefits.

Injury11_06082014There are now 200 conditions on the list of compassionate allowances, which include diseases and other serious medical conditions that automatically qualify an applicant for disability benefits if the criteria are met. Applicants with one of these conditions can receive a decision on their social security disability benefits within days rather than weeks.

Conditions on the list include certain types of cancers, brain disorders, and other severe health problems. These conditions are considered to be so severe that Social Security Administration examiners do not need to fully develop an applicant's work history to make a decision on the claim.

The new conditions added to the compassionate allowances list are:

1. Adult Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
2. Adult Onset Huntington Disease
3. Allan-Herndon-Dudley Syndrome
4. Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma
5. Aplastic Anemia
6. Beta Thalassemia Major
7. Bilateral Optic Atrophy - Infantile
8. Caudal Regression Syndrome - Types III and IV
9. Child T-Cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma
10. Congenital Lymphedema
11. DeSanctis Cacchione Syndrome
12. Dravet Syndrome
13. Endometrial Stromal Sarcoma
14. Erdheim Chester Disease
15. Fatal Familial Insomnia
16. Fryns Syndrome
17. Fulminant Giant Cell Myocarditis
18. Hepatopulmonary Syndrome
19. Hepatorenal Syndrome
20. Jervell and Lange-Nielsen Syndrome
21. Leiomyosarcoma
22. Malignant Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor
23. Malignant Germ Cell Tumor
24. MECP 2 Duplication Syndrome
25. Menkes Disease - Classic or Infantile Onset Form
26. NFU-1 Mitochondrial Disease
27. Non-Ketotic Hyperglcinemia
28. Peritoneal Mucinous Carcinomatosis
29. Phelan- McDermid Syndrome
30. Retinopathy of Prematurity - Stage V
31. Roberts Syndrome
32. Severe Combined Immunodeficiency - Childhood
33. Sinonasal Cancer
34. Transplant Coronary Artery Vasculopathy
35. Usher Syndrome - Type I

Michael J. Astrue, commissioner of Social Security, said that nearly 200,000 people with severe disabilities have been approved for benefits quickly, usually within two weeks, through the compassionate allowances program since it began in 2008.

North Carolina Social Security Disability Lawyers

If you have been denied for Social Security disability benefits, the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin may be able to help you. Call 1-866-900-7078 for a free evaluation of your case.

Can I Get Social Security Disability Benefits for a Mental Illness?

Medical43_07232014Social Security Disability benefits are available for people who have become disabled and are no longer able to work. For some, this may mean a physical disability, such as an injury that leaves you unable to walk or to have full range of motion in your arms. For others, it may mean a mental disability brought on by a mental illness such as schizophrenia.

The Social Security Administration does consider some mental illnesses and disorders as criteria for receiving Social Security Disability benefits. However, many claims that are based on mental conditions are rejected more often than those based on physical disability. The reason is that it can be difficult to objectively show that a mental condition is severe enough to prevent basic work functions. In addition, not all examiners may have the training to understand how to evaluate mental disorders or illnesses in relation to employment.

Some mental disorders and illnesses are included in the Social Security Administration's official listing of impairments ( -- meaning that, if you have one of these conditions and meet all of the required criteria noted in the listing, you are considered to be disabled. This list includes:

• Schizophrenic, paranoid and other psychotic disorders
• Affective disorders, such as depression or hallucinations
• Mental retardation
• Anxiety-related disorders
• Somatoform disorders
• Personality disorders
• Autistic disorders and other pervasive developmental disorders

For each of these conditions, other criteria must be met to show that it is disabling.

If you have a condition that is not listed, or if your condition does not meet the criteria in these listings, you may still be eligible for benefits. You will have to show that your condition will interfere with your ability to perform work and that the condition is likely to last for a long period of time.

North Carolina Social Security Disability Lawyers

If you have been denied Social Security Disability benefits, the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin may be able to help you. Call 1-866-900-7078 for a free evaluation of your case and to find out if one of our North Carolina Social Security Disability lawyers may be able to help you!

What Factors Does the Social Security Administration Use to Determine If I'm Disabled?

Every application for Social Security disability benefits will be reviewed individually on its own merits, and many factors can be considered when determining eligibility.

However, the Social Security Administration does use a 5-step process as a basic framework for determining eligibility for benefits. Of course, interpretations of these guidelines may vary, so each case may be treated differently.

Here are the five questions that the Social Security Administration asks when determining benefits:

Are you working?

If you are working, you may still be eligible for Social Security disability benefits, depending on how much you are making. Generally speaking, if you average more than $1,010 per month in income, you will not be considered disabled for the purposes of receiving benefits. Income limits will vary according to other factors, so you may be able to make more or less than this and be considered disabled.

Is your condition "severe?"

"Severe" is a relative term, and it is defined by how much your disability impedes your ability to do the work to which you are accustomed to performing. If you are unable to perform basic work-related duties, you may be considered disabled for the purposes of receiving Social Security disability benefits.

Injury1_07232014Is your condition found in the list of disabling conditions?

The Social Security Administration maintains a list of medical conditions that are considered "so severe they automatically mean that you are disabled." Such conditions include ALS, multiple myeloma, and being on a list to receive a liver transplant. Mental disorders are also included.

If you condition is not on the extensive list, it will be evaluated based on whether it is comparable to a condition on the list.

Can you do the work you did previously?

A construction worker who loses the ability to walk may not be able to work anymore, while a writer who loses the ability to walk may still be able to work. The construction worker may be considered disabled, while the writer may not since the writer would be able to do the work performed previously. Your disability will be considered in relation to the type of work you have been accustomed to doing, as well as your age and your education.

Can you do any other type of work?

Even if you can't do the type of work you are accustomed to doing, you may be able to do other work. If that is the case, you may not be eligible to receive Social Security disability benefits. The Social Security Administration will consider your age, education, work history and skills to determine whether you may be able to do another type of work.

Every case will be evaluated on its own merits, and application of these guidelines is open for interpretation. In fact, a majority of applications for Social Security disability benefits are initially denied.

If your application for Social Security disability benefits has been denied, a North Carolina Social Security disability lawyer may be able to help you appeal the decision and get the benefits that you may deserve. Call the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin at 1-866-900-7078 for a free evaluation of your case and to find out how one of our Social Security benefits lawyers may be able to help you.

Contact Information

Asheville Law Office

300 Ridgefield Court Suite 309
Asheville, NC 28806
Phone: 828-552-8215
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Charlotte Law Office

301 S McDowell St, Suite 900
Charlotte, NC 28204
Phone: 704-599-1078
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Durham Law Office

280 South Mangum Street, Suite 400
Durham, NC 27701
Phone: 919-688-4991
Fax: 800-716-7881

Fayetteville Law Office

2915 Raeford Road, Suite 204
Fayetteville, NC 28303
Phone: 910-488-0611
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Goldsboro Law Office

1308 Wayne Memorial Drive, Suite B
Goldsboro, NC 27534
Phone: 919-731-2581
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Greensboro Law Office

300 N. Greene Street, Suite 850
Greensboro, North Carolina 27401
Phone: 336-665-7072
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Greenville Law Office

702 Cromwell Dr. Suite G
Greenville, NC 27858
Phone: 252-355-5205
Toll Free: 1-866-780-3227

Henderson Law Office

514 Dabney Drive, Suite 200
Henderson, NC 27536
Phone: 252-492-4600
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Morganton Law Office

216 N. Sterling Street, Suite B
Morganton, NC 28655
Phone: 828-219-3080
Toll Free: 1-844-520-2894

New Bern Law Office

1505 South Glenburnie Rd, Unit P
New Bern, NC 28562
Phone: 252-634-9010
Toll Free: 1-866-780-3422

Raleigh Law Office

4325 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 100
Raleigh, NC 27607
Phone: 919-834-1184
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Roanoke Rapids Law Office

709 Julian R. Allsbrook Highway
Roanoke Rapids, NC 27870
Phone: 252-537-9670
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Rocky Mount Law Office

144 Woodridge Court
Rocky Mount, NC 27804
Phone: 252-937-4730
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Sanford Law Office

703-B South Horner Boulevard
Sanford, NC 27330
Phone: 919-775-1564
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Wilson Law Office

2315 Airport Blvd Suite A
Wilson, North Carolina 27896
Phone: 252-246-9090
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078

Winston-Salem Law Office

301 N. Main Street, Suite 2409-C
Winston-Salem, NC 27101
Toll Free: 1-866-900-7078