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  • Rusty Savoie

SHOULD I APPLY FOR SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY BENEFITS?

If you apply for Social Security Disability and later want to settle your workers’ compensation claim, Social Security will have to be involved and approve of the settlement. This is because Social Security Disability will qualify you for Medicare regardless of your age. Medicare will not pay for treatment related to your work-accident after you settle and they will only approve of a settlement that provides you sufficient funds to pay for future medical care related to your work-accident.

You should think twice before applying for Social Security Disability benefits if you intend to someday settle your workers’ compensation claim. If you have already applied, or if you will be Medicare eligible within 30 months (are you 63½?), you can settle your claim for less than $25,000 and not involve Social Security or Medicare. If you want to settle for more, a Medicare Set-Aside (MSA) will be required.

This is a study paid for by the Insurance Company to determine your future medical cost related to your work-accident for use by Social Security in deciding whether to approve of the settlement.

If a Medicare Set-Aside is required, it makes settlement difficult because you cannot “negotiate.” The insurance has to pay at least the amount of the MSA or Social Security will not approve of the settlement. The insurance company will then often refuse to settle. Unfortunately, you cannot make them settle.

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