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What is an Amended Onset Date in Social Security Disability Benefits?

What is an Amended Onset Date in Social Security Disability Benefits?

At Sharon Christie Law, a Baltimore Social Security Disability Law Firm, we are often asked the question, What is an Amended Onset Date in Social Security Disability Benefits? In this video, Sharon Christie examines this question and provides you with the answer.

Official Transcript: What is an Amended Onset Date in Social Security Disability Benefits? 

Hi I’m Sharon Christie your nurse attorney for Social Security disability benefits. Today I want to talk to you about the onset date and what that means. What it means if you have to amend the onset date now when you file your application there’s a question in the application that asks you when did you become unable to work.  

Now what that question really means is when did you stop working at a gainful activity level and for most people that’s when did you stop working full-time or when did your medical condition become so bad that you could no longer work. So sometimes we’ll see cases where somebody has stopped working for reasons unrelated to their health even though they were having health problems, but within a short period of time they actually have a significant deterioration in their health. Such that even if they were still working, they would have to stop. That’s what the onset date is all about and it’s a very important date because Social Security is going to look at your medical evidence from that date and they usually go back about a year prior to that date. But you’re mostly focused on that date going forward. 

So, what happens in some cases is that when the case is ready to go to a hearing and the full file is available. I find evidence in some cases people who were actually working longer or beyond what they said their onset date was or that the medical evidence really doesn’t support a claim that the onset date is the date that they said in their application. But there is a later date that is very well supported by the medical evidence and in those cases then what we need to do is very simple. We just amend the onset date. All that means is we change the on that day we have a form that we file with Social Security. That says I would like to change my onset date – and then you put in your due date and you have to confirm the Social Security that you understand the consequences of that amendment. .

The consequences of that amendment are that the judge is only going to look at potentially awarding disability benefits from the amended onset date going forward. He or she will not go backwards from that amended onset date. They’ll go from that date moving forward so it potentially affects the amount of back payment that you would receive. But you want to have your case in the best position possible to win. So, if in fact the evidence does not support an earlier onset date you don’t want to try to argue that earlier date because you don’t have the evidence to support it. Present the strongest case you can present and in some cases that does involve amending the onset date.  

The other reason that we amend an onset date in a limited number of cases is because of age. If I have a client who has turned 50 at some point in the process when the rules get a little easier or have turned 55 when the rules get even more easier. In some cases, if I’ve had a client who’s had a change of age and it’s put them in a different age category for social security purposes then we will definitely look at whether we want to amend the onset date to that later age because the rules are going to be different once you turn 50. If that’s going to make for a stronger case then I always recommend my clients that we do it. So, the reason that you amended onset date is to strengthen your case always remember that it’s to help make your case a better one and put it in a position that a judge can approve you.

The Path to Social Security Disability Benefits with Sharon Christie Law

Step 1: Understanding Social Security’s Definition of Disabled

The definition of disabled, according to Social Security, is that you have severe limitations from your health problems that keep you from doing any kind of work for at least 12 consecutive months. This is the first thing we look at when evaluating your case. Your diagnosis is just the starting point. To get disability benefits for you, we must prove that your disabling condition causes severe limitations in your day to day activities.

Step 2: Medical Records in Your Disability Case

You must have medical evidence to prove your disability case. The most important evidence is your medical records that show your diagnosis, your symptoms, and your response to treatment.

Step 3: Don’t go it alone: How Sharon Christie Law Can Help You

At Sharon Christie Law, a Social Security Disability Law Firm, we recognize that no one ever plans to get so sick that they have to stop working. When you need to apply for Social Security Disability Benefits we recognize that you will be anxious about the process and whether you can qualify for disability benefits. Our goal at Sharon Christie Law is to help you win your case and give you the financial stability you need! Why work with us?

We do it all for you: At Sharon Christie Law we handle all aspects of the case for you, from preparing and filing your application through the hearing with a judge. We are with you every step of the way.  When working with us, you focus on feeling better, and we focus on winning your case.

We return your phone calls: We understand that you have many questions regarding Social Security Disability Benefits. We never want you to wonder what is happening with your case. We are here to answer your questions. All phone calls and emails are returned within 24 hours. That is our promise to you.

We believe in client education: The Social Security Disability process is confusing. We think it is important that you understand each step in the process. So, we created a section on our website that is accessible only to clients. This client’s only section tells you everything you need to know about the disability process.