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November 2015 Archives

Back injuries are common, yet debilitating

It might seem as if everyone at your workplace has problems with their back. For this reason, when you suffer a back injury that leaves you in debilitating pain, you might not think that you should seek worker’s compensation. It is important to realize that, though these types of injuries are common, they can be chronic and have a major impact on your life.

Social Security Credits

In most situations to obtain Social Security Disability benefits it is necessary that you have 40 credits (quarters) of coverage under the social security system prior to the time that you are unable to work. The amount of earnings needed per quarter for a credit in 2015 is $1,220.00. This amount changes from year to year as average wages increase. If you stop working, it is very important that you make sure you apply for disability benefits as soon as possible after you stop working. A longer wait can create additional challenges to ultimately receiving the assistance to which you are entitled.

Social Security Disability and Social Security Retirement Benefits

If you are on social security disability at the time you reach your normal retirement age, you will automatically transition to full retirement benefits. The law does not allow an individual to simultaneously receive both retirement and disability on the same earnings record. One advantage of obtaining Social Security Disability benefits is the ability to maximize the amount you receive because it is not necessary to take reduced retirement benefits prior to your normal retirement age (i.e., 62).

Two vehicle crash kills 34 year-old North Carolina man

A 34 year-old man has been killed in a crash at a North Carolina intersection that involved his vehicle and one other. The early morning accident occurred when the surviving driver, a 49 year-old man, crossed the centerline and crashed into the vehicle of the victim. Law enforcement officials do not believe that high speeds played a role in this accident, as both men were traveling at the posted speed limits.

Can I sue a third party and collect workers’ compensation?

When you are injured in a workplace accident, you are entitled by North Carolina law to workers’ compensation benefits without the necessity of suing your employer to collect them. The tradeoff for receiving medical care for your workplace injuries and lost wages is that you give up your right to sue your employer in most situations.

Create an Account With Social Security

You can get an estimate of your social security benefits by going to www.ssa.gov. Click on the "Information for" tab, then click on "my Social Security Information" and either create an account or log into your existing account. Once you are logged in, go to the "Estimated Benefits" tab under the "My Home" tab. There it will tell you what your estimated payment would be for disability and what you would receive in benefits at different retirement ages. It will also tell you if you have enough quarters of coverage for disability benefits.

Hurt while breaking the rules? You could still be entitled to benefits.

In North Carolina, injuries that do not occur in the course of employment might not be compensable. The phrase "in the course of employment" has a specific meaning when applied to a workers compensation case. Sometimes, an employee is acting in the course of his/her employment, even when the employee was doing something that he/she was specifically forbidden to do. For example, an employee could have a compensable accident if he/she was hurt while disobeying the instructions of a superior, if the forbidden action provided some benefit to the employer. See Hoyle v. Isenhour Brick & Tile Co., 306 N.C. 248, 251, 293 S.E.2d 196, 198 (1982). If your employer has told you that you are not entitled to benefits because you were not acting in the course of your employment when you were injured, you should contact a North Carolina Workers Compensation attorney promptly. This is a complex area of the law, and only an experienced attorney can help you determine whether you will be entitled to compensation. If you have any questions, please contact John or Christian at the law firm of Ayers, Whitlow, Dressler by calling (704) 377-5050.

Social security benefits for World War II veterans

Social security disability benefits are the financial lifelines for many in the elderly community. This is especially true for the most vulnerable in North Carolina, such as those who do not have a lot of money, including veterans of the Second World War. The federal government has created a special program for these veterans through the Social Security Administration.

Eligibility Screening Tool

The Social Security Administration offers an online benefits eligibility screening tool that can assist you in determining whether you're eligible for regular social security disability benefits or supplemental security income benefits. The link for this site is ssabest.benefits.gov. Based on your answers to the questions provided it will give you guidance as to the type of assistance potentially available to you and your family. If you have questions and would like to talk to somebody at the Social Security Administration, the toll free number is 1-800-772-1213. If you have limitations in hearing, the toll free TTY number is 1-800-325-0778.

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