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Arizona Social Security Disability Blog

Monday, February 12, 2018

Dispelling the Myth that the SSDI Benefits Recipients Don’t Want to Work

Q: Are Social Security disability benefits recipients really disabled or just lazy?

Qualifying for Social Security disability insurance (“SSDI”) is not always easy. Even those who are ultimately approved, often wait months or even years for that approval, especially since 2/3 of initial applications are denied.

Since much news regarding Social Security disability benefits is focused on how long and hard a process applying for disability benefits can be, many people – – including those fortunate enough to eventually be approved – – look at Social Security disability benefits recipients as being "lucky".

Sure, recipients may feel “lucky” to have finally been approved for benefits before losing their homes or dying from complications of their injuries or illnesses--something that happens far too often. And while recipients may feel “lucky” to have some bit of financial compensation, it's generally a far cry from the salary and benefits they were earning prior to becoming disabled. Even with benefits, many recipients live just above or below the poverty level. So, are they really “lucky”?

But in our work-obsessed society, many able-bodied people stigmatize SSDI benefits recipients as being lazy, freeloaders, or even frauds who aren't as sick or injured as they claim and just want to collect a government check for doing nothing or next to nothing forever.

For many SSDI benefits recipients, nothing could be farther from the truth.

First of all, those applying for disability benefits through SSDI have to have worked and paid into the Social Security system for the requisite number of hours and years in order to be eligible for benefits. Then, they must qualify under the government’s stringent definition of "disabled" by proving they are suffering from one or more of the recognized physical or mental disabilities.

With the serious delays and intense scrutiny that goes into the review of SSDI applications and appeals, the amount of proof required for an approval surely weeds out the vast majority of would-be fraudulent claims. The idea that one would choose to suffer daily from the mental or physical disability so severe that they can no longer provide for themselves or their families-- but would rather subsist on a meager government subsidy-- is mind-boggling.

Many people who receive SSDI benefits want to work but are either no longer able to (SSDI).

No longer being able to work is a blow to the pride of many benefit recipients. So much so, that those who are able to will often attempt a return to the workforce so they can get off SSDI government assistance. And those who can't return, often look for ways to give back and feel useful like doing volunteer work when they are able.

When you are faced with a physical or psychologically disabling condition, your whole life can be turned upside down. If you are unable to work, the financial burden, when added to your physical or mental pain, can be overwhelming. Trying to navigate the complicated process of applying for disability benefits on top of all that you're already dealing with could result in delays and mistakes in your application.

If your application is denied, the appeals process is lengthy—and you continue to wait for money to pay the bills. Hiring a skilled Social Security disability benefits attorney who knows the procedures may increase the chances of your application being granted the first time around or a subsequent appeal being successful.

If you or a loved one needs help applying for disability benefits or appealing the denial of benefits, the disability attorneys of Arizona at Roeschke Law can help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

From our offices in Phoenix, Tempe, and Tucson, we represent the disabled in all Arizona counties and cities.


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