Living with cancer is difficult. You have to think about what treatment options you are going to pursue and how those will impact you. Thinking about how radiation and chemotherapy will affect your life might be difficult, but they things that a person going through cancer may have to deal with.
When you are diagnosed with cancer, you might soon realize that you are in for a rough time financially. You may not be able to keep your work hours up, which means that you will have a decrease in income. You may not be able to work at all. Throughout all of this, the bills aren’t going to stop coming in. One of the options that you have for making ends meet is to file for disability.
Social Security Disability Income
If you have had a job in the past, you might qualify for Social Security Disability Income (SSDI). This isn’t a quick way to get the income that you may desperately need. The approval process is often lengthy and can take months or longer.
Even when an application is approved, the benefits don’t start until the sixth month in which you are disabled. There is a chance that an application based on a cancer diagnosis might be a bit faster, but the waiting period will still apply to these cases.
Approval isn’t automatic
There is a chance that you will be denied when you first apply for SSDI. This isn’t uncommon. You do have the right to appeal the decision, so make sure that you pay attention to deadlines and other information provided in the paperwork you receive.
Many SSDI that are denied on the initial review are approved on appeal. There isn’t a guarantee, but preparing yourself for the possibility might help you.
Being approved for SSDI could bring other benefits. One benefit that might help you when you have cancer is that you will qualify for Medicare after 24 months of being on SSDI. This won’t help you to cover medical bills right away, but it could prove to be a great help in the future.
There is a downside to receiving disability. You might not be able to qualify for needs-based programs, such as food stamps, due to the income you have from SSDI. Income based housing and similar programs can also be affected by the receipt of SSDI.