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 " I contacted attorney Kelly regarding a disability case. He meet with me multiple times prior to my hearing. He was polite and very kind. I was very prepared and so was he. We won the case. I would recommend him. - Review on Avvo Lawyer " 

Looking for “disability lawyers in my area?” If you need a Social Security disability attorney, Matthew Kelly Associates is here to help. We’re experienced Social Security advocates for the disabled, and we can help you get the SSI and SSD benefits that you deserve.

What Are Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income?


If you have experienced an injury or a serious illness that results in a long-term disability that prevents you from working entirely, this can be devastating if you have not already reached retirement age. That’s why the federal government has established the SSA to provide benefits in the form of disability compensation.

These programs are Social Security Disability (SSD) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). But while these programs can be very beneficial, it’s also hard to navigate the complexities of qualifying for each one, and to get the compensation that you need to live a healthy, happy, and whole life after being affected by a serious illness or injury. That’s why you need an SSI disability lawyer on your side. At Matthew Kelly Associates, we will advocate for you and ensure you get the SSI benefits or SSD benefits that you deserve.

Social Security Disability – Explaining the Basics

Social Security Disability is a branch of Social Security that provides payments to workers who have not yet reached retirement age, but are unable to work for an extended period of time due to a serious disability. To get benefits, you must either:

1.    Be an injured or disabled worker under the age of 66
2.    Be the family member of an eligible worker

In addition, to qualify for benefits, you must have worked recently enough and long enough. Typically, SSD recipients can receive benefits if they have worked for at least 5 of the past 10 years. However, the requirements are somewhat flexible, so individuals may qualify if they have only worked intermittently, but have still earned some income in the past few years. 

In addition to benefits paid directly to a worker, family members and dependents can often be paid “auxiliary benefits” if they meet certain qualifications. 

For example, dependent children under the age of 18 who are in school full-time and are not married typically qualify. A spouse may qualify if they are under the age of 62, are the joint caregiver of your children, and your children are under the age of 16. Note that auxiliary benefits cannot be combined with SSI benefits.

All U.S. citizens are eligible for SSD benefits, as are permanent residents, as long as they meet the SSA’s requirements for benefits. However, individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents can still qualify under certain criteria.

If you do qualify as an insured worker, your disability must also meet some other criteria to qualify for SSD benefits, such as:

1.    You must be unable to engage in substantial gainful employment due to your disability
2.    Your disability must be expected to last a minimum of one year
3.    Your disability must be listed within the SSA’s list of impairments


If you do qualify for SSD benefits, the amount of your monthly payment is not based on the severity of your disability, but on your average lifetime earnings. If you can show that you were disabled before the date of your application, you may also receive past benefits, based on the date on which you initially became disabled. Find out how long SSID benefits last.

Supplemental Security Income – Explaining the Basics


SSI, or Supplemental Security Income, is a benefit for both adults and children who are severely disabled. To qualify, you must either be:

  • Age 65 or older

  • Blind

  • Disabled

For children, the disability must result in severe functional limitations, and in adults, it must result in the inability to do “substantial gainful activity.” It also must be expected to last at least 12 months, or be expected to result in death. 

To qualify, you must also:

  • Have limited income

  • Have limited resources

  • Be a U.S. citizen or national (some aliens qualify)

Note that if your income or assets exceed certain thresholds, you cannot qualify for SSI. It’s intended only for those with very limited resources. In contrast, even those with substantial income or assets can typically qualify for SSD benefits.


You can learn more about requirements for SSI here.

Securing Your Social Security Disability Benefits – How A Social Security Lawyer Can Help 


Securing the SSD or SSI benefits that you deserve can be a lengthy, complicated process. The application process itself is very complex and takes a long time to fill out, and mistakes made on the application can delay your benefits – or disqualify you entirely.

And, even if you make no mistakes, your SSD or SSI benefits may be denied anyway – and you will have to make an appeal, which is also a very complicated and difficult process. 

So, what should you do? You need the help of an experienced Social Security attorney who understands the application process and can help you navigate the complexities of getting the SSI and SSD benefits that you deserve.

Your attorney will work with you throughout the entire process to make sure you qualify, file your application, and, if necessary, appeal to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. With an experienced social security attorney from Matthew Kelly Associates, you’ll avoid frustration and delays in your payments – and you’ll have someone who can help you through the complexities of qualifying for SSD or SSI benefits.

Contact Matthew Kelly Associates Now to Get the Help You Need

If you have been Googling “social security attorney near me,” look no further than the firm of Matthew Kelly Associates. Having an experienced advocate on your side is invaluable as you go through the lengthy, complicated, and often frustrating process of qualifying for SSD or SSI benefits. 

But with us on your team, you can get the guidance, legal aid, and assistance you need. Our team has helped secure benefits for hundreds of individuals throughout the Wilkes Barre area for over 25 years, and we will work with you through every step of the process. 

From your initial filing to appeals and more, we’re always here to help. With our deep knowledge of the SSA application process and proven strategies for success, we will fight tooth and nail to secure the disability benefits that you deserve.


Contact us online or give us a call at 570-405-8710 to get started and get a free, no-commitment consultation with an experienced Social Security attorney near you in the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton, PA area.

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