Mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder disrupt the daily lives of millions of Americans each day. The National Alliance on Mental Illness notes that those suffering from these conditions may be eligible to avail themselves of certain Social Security Disability and/or Social Security Insurance benefits via several available programs.
Those who believe they might qualify for SSD for their mental illness may want to keep a few factors about the program in mind before, during and after they apply.
1. Consider current assets
Not everyone who suffers from a mental illness qualifies for SSD, even if their mental illness prevents them from working. Those who qualify must prove that their mental illness prevented them from working over the past year. Medical records and letters from therapists or other mental health providers can help prove this.
2. Family members can benefit from SSI
Once individuals qualify for SSD, their children under the age of 18, as well as their spouses, can benefit from Social Security Disability Insurance. These benefits include a variety of medical care for the family, along with the monthly payment from SSD. After two years, applicants may also qualify for Medicare coverage.
3. Denied applicants can appeal
Those who receive a denial of benefits due to their mental illness can appeal and request a hearing. The process of appeal may take well over a year; however, appearing before a judge may help those denied earn benefits from the standing judge.
The response to a request for SSD/SSI may take several months, depending on the complexity of each individual case.