As we have discussed frequently on our blog, people in the U.S. generally and Oregon specifically who depend on benefits from Social Security disability are the ones who can least afford to lose them. This is doubly true of people who have terminal illnesses. Not only can many of these people not work, but their potential for future earning is obviously limited.
When people apply for SSDI benefits, there is generally a five-month waiting period before benefits are paid out. For people with terminal illnesses, however, this can literally be a matter of life and death. Time is of the essence, and five months might be too long to be of any use to someone who is very sick.
Thus, three U.S. senators have increased legislation to modify the five-month waiting period for people who are not expected to live past that time. If enacted, the bill — called the Expedited Disability Insurance Payments for Terminally Ill Individuals Act of 2013 — would get benefits into the hands of people who desperately need them. The payment schedule would be modified so that people would receive 50 percent of the full benefit in the first month; 75 percent of the full benefit in the second month; and the full benefit thereafter.
That works out to 85 percent of the full benefit for those five months — a possibly life-changing amount for someone who deperately needs it. Anyone in Oregon who is disabled and considering applying for SSDI benefits, whether or not their condition is terminal, may wish to speak to an experienced Social Security benefits attorney for assistance.
Source: Insurance News Net, “Senators Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Expedite Social Security Benefits for Terminally Ill,” July 18, 2013