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Waiting for Social Security Disability can lead to financial woes

The average worker in Virginia has no desire to secure Social Security Disability income. After all, the only reason people apply for these benefits is a severe injury or debilitating illness. It can be incredibly humbling for someone who has spent their entire adult life working for a living wage to need to ask for Social Security Disability payments while unable to work.

Sadly, people get hurt at work and medical conditions progress over time. Every day across the state of Virginia, people realize that they can no longer continue performing their job due to injury or illness. If the condition is likely to persist, these individuals may find themselves in need of Social Security Disability income. Unfortunately, simply applying does not connect individuals with the benefits they need to maintain their homes and families.

Wait times on applications have become incredibly long

People across the country with serious medical conditions who cannot work find themselves struggling to make ends meet. Despite the fact that they filled out an application for Social Security Disability, they don't receive a timely response. In fact, many people find themselves waiting a year or even two years for a hearing.

During that long wait, they may exhaust their personal savings or have to access retirement accounts, despite the potential for penalties if they are below a certain age. Others may not have those resources, which can leave them at risk for losing their home and other serious consequences. That delay is only exacerbated by mistakes in the application or insufficient evidence at a hearing.

Understanding that there is a long wait should motivate potential applicants for disability benefits to ensure that their application is accurate and thorough when they first submit it for consideration.

Medical and living expenses keep coming in, despite someone's injury or illness

Most landlords, banks and mortgage companies have little concern for the medical well-being of the people they work with. They will expect payments on time and in full, regardless of whether a tenant or mortgage holder has experienced a serious hardship.

Similarly, seeking treatment for an injury or illness while someone is unable to work can result in mounting medical bills that the individual has no way to pay, as the hospital won't waive the cost just because the patient can't work. The potentially devastating debt that results from the long wait periods for Social Security Disability benefits may leave applicants more vulnerable to collection activity and the loss of their home.

For some individuals, receiving Social Security Disability benefits will help them repay those debts, but for others, repayment may not be possible. Bankruptcy may be an option for those whose medical condition has resulted in massive bills and other debts while they were unable to work and not collecting Social Security Disability.

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