How do I apply for Medicare disability?

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Just the essentials...
  • You can apply for Medicare Disability online
  • Review the requirements online before filing out the application or making an appointment at your local Social Security office
  • Making an account on my Social Security will allow you to track the status of your application online

Medicare Disability also referred to as Social Security Disability; applications can be completed at your convenience when you fill out the form at home or anywhere you have access to a laptop and wifi. If you choose not to apply for Medicare disability online, you will need to speak with a Social Security representative at your local office or wait for an appointment with a representative.

For those that can visit an SSA office, phone applications can be processed at 1-800-772-1213. A special toll-free line for hearing impaired can be reached at TTY 1-800-325-0778.

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Begin a Social Security Disability Application Online

Many people opt to begin their disability application online because it is fast and easy. Before you start the application for Medicare disability, you should spend a few moments going over the requirements for disability. It’s also important to remember that Medicare Disability applications are multi-stepped and require one to several hours to complete.

Advantages of Applying for Social Security Disability Online

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When you apply for disability online, there are significant advantages. The best benefits are listed below.

  • Can be completed entirely at home
  • Allows you to start the application immediately
  • No need to wait for an appointment
  • Can be completed online, even if you aren’t living in the US at the time

Can Someone Help You Fill Out a Social Security Disability Application?

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The Social Security Administration understands that a person may need help applying for disability. The person helping an applicant can be a relative, friend, paralegal, attorney, employer, or a fellow member of an organization or advocacy group.

There are no issues with someone helping you fill out an application, but there are some factors that you and the person helping you complete the application should know.

  • Information about the form completer may be asked
  • Form completer must answer questions as the applicant would answer them
  • The applicant must “sign” the application (electronic signatures apply too)
  • If the person is not with the form completer or the unable to sign the application when it is completed online, SSA will mail them a form to verify their signature

It is not necessary for a form completer to be an authorized representative. But, if an applicant wants to officially appoint someone to do business on a regular basis with the SSA on their behalf, they will need to fill out the SSA-1696-U4 (Appointment of Representative).

Review the Adult Disability Checklist Before Starting Application

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Before beginning the application process, applicants should review the Adult Disability Checklist. The checklist will prepare you for what to expect during the application process. By being prepared, you can gather information that may be required to complete the application.

Information needed to complete the Adult Disability Checklist includes basic identification information and banking information for direct deposit. If you have been married or divorced, you will need that information as well.

You will also need information about your last two years of employment, education, and training history. Specifically, the following information is required to apply for disability online.

  • Date of birth
  • Legal name
  • Social Security number
  • Spouse/former spouse
  • Name and DOB of minor children

Information about your medical condition that you believe qualifies you for disability will also be required. Specifically, the application will require:

  • Name, address, and contact information for someone that knows of your conditions and can help fill out an application
  • Detailed information about illness and conditions
  • Doctor, hospital, and clinic addresses, phone numbers, and dates of treatment
  • List of medications and prescribers
  • Names and dates of tests

Beginning the Disability Benefit Application

After you have completed the application, you will begin the Disability Benefit Application. The application is very detailed and requires a great deal of personal and medical information.  On average, applicants spend one to two hours filling out the form.

When filling out the application online, you can save as you go, which means you can take your time or take breaks as you need it.

The last step to an online application requires you to complete the Medical Release form. By signing the medical release form, you are allowing Medicare to access your medical records. Medical records are an important part of the determination process.

What Happens After Submitting the Application

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After you are finished with the application and all applicable forms, you will submit it to Medicare. If there are any follow-up questions or if more information is required to make a determination, you will be contacted by a Medicare representative through mail or by phone. If you create an account at the my Social Security website, you can track your application online as well.

After the application is completed, you can expect the following to occur:

  • Confirmation of the application (electronically or by mail)
  • Application will be reviewed
  • Contact will be made if more information or documentation is needed
  • If any other family members are eligible for benefits, information will be sent to applicant
  • Application will be processed
  • Decision will be mailed to applicant

Now that you know what to expect when you fill out an application, you are ready to start the process. If you have any questions or concerns, the SSA has forums and blogs available.

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