New Jersey Temporary Disability Insurance is a state-run program to provide short-term financial assistance to workers who suffer a non-work-related injury or illness that prevent them from performing their regular or customary work. In most cases, the temporary disability claim will be processed between two weeks and six weeks after a completed application is filed.
Depending on the nature and severity of your disability, you may not need any additional disability benefit payments. You are eligible for up to 26 weeks (6 months) of N.J. temporary disability benefit payments. This can be ample time to recover from simple injuries or brief illnesses that resolve within a few weeks or months. But what will you do if your disability is expected to continue beyond the 26 weeks for which New Jersey temporary disability will cover you?
What to Do If Your New Jersey Temporary Disability Runs Out
New Jersey’s temporary disability insurance (TDI) program will pay up to 85 percent of your average wages through your benefit period. But if your disability is expected to continue to prevent you from working for longer than the TDI program’s 26-week benefit period, you need take steps to apply for other longer-term disability benefits.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI or SSD) Pays Long-Term Disability Benefits
In many cases, the time required for an injury or illness to be resolved and for the victim to return to work is impossible to predict with certainty. Some patients heal more quickly or recover from serious illnesses without residual impairments. Medicine is not an exact science.
You may have expected that your disability would last only three, four, or five months. But when that time expired, you saw that you were not recovering, suffered complications, or were diagnosed with an additional illness or a more severe and permanent injury than you believed. Now, your New Jersey temporary disability benefits are running out, and you still can’t work.
The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI or SSD) program is designed to provide continuing financial support to workers like you who paid into the Social Security Fund and suffered a long-term disability.
In fact, only those workers whose disabling impairment already has or is expected to last for at least 1 year are eligible to claim SSD benefits.
There are significant differences between New Jersey’s TDI benefit program and the federal government’s SSD program. New Jersey’s TDI required your physician or medical practitioner to certify that you were unable to perform your regular or customary work for a projected period of time.
Under the Social Security Disability rules and regulations, a worker must have accumulated a minimum number of work credits, usually over 10 years, to be eligible for SSD benefits. Once an SSD claimant’s work credits are confirmed, the Social Security Administration determines if the benefits application supports the conclusion that the claimant has a qualifying disability:
Disability = A medically determinable physical or mental impairment that has lasted or is expected to last 12 months and prevents the person from performing substantial gainful activities.
How Long Does It Take to Get Social Security Disability Benefits Approved
Winning approval of benefits in a typical Social Security Disability claim is not a quick process. It can take anywhere from three or four months up to 18 months before benefits are approved. That is why working closely with an experienced Social Security Disability attorney or a team of highly trained, skilled disability advocates is so important.
The government’s processing time for many SSD claims is delayed by poorly prepared or incomplete claim packages that were submitted by claimants themselves or were mistakenly prepared by a lawyer or advocate who was not familiar with the Social Security Administration’s detailed criteria.
At London Eligibility Disability Advocates, Attorney Scott London and his team of expert disability advocates work with clients who are filing SSD benefits claims every single day. London Eligibility handles only disability claims. After many years of valuable experience, the service provided by London Eligibility Disability Advocates is unmatched in quality, thoroughness, and professionalism.
Filing for SSD Benefits While You Receive New Jersey Temporary Disability
Because there is a potential for a claimant’s Social Security Disability claim to take several months to be approved, anyone who is currently collecting NJ TDI benefits, and suspects they may need benefits after 26 weeks, should consider filing their SSD claim immediately. By initiating your SSD claim during your TDI period, you will be eliminating at least some time during which you have no benefit payments coming in.
What Happens If Your Disability Claim Is Denied at First?
As many as half of all SSD claims are denied initially. This is partly because so many SSD benefit claim packages are prepared so poorly. And many claims are simply misread or insufficiently studied by the Disability Determination Service agents, who see the file first and spend too little time examining the evidence.