How to File for Disability After a Car Accident in Florida

Figuring out how to cover all your living expenses after a vehicle collision can be difficult. While compensation from a personal injury settlement can be helpful, you also have other options to replace your income. Disability benefits like short-term disability, long-term disability, SSI, and SSD may be available.

If you are unable to work after a car accident, you should immediately contact a Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney like David Fuchs who can help you find the resources you need.

What Is Short-Term Disability in Florida?

person filling out disability claim formShort-term disability (STD) is a type of insurance that provides income replacement for a certain amount of time after a qualifying medical situation. Some STD plans require a waiting period before they begin covering your lost wages, and most of them are only valid for up to 90 days or another similar length of time.

Can You Get Short-Term Disability After a Car Accident in Florida?

Yes: if your medical conditions prevent you from working for a short period of time, then you can file an STD claim and get benefits after a car accident.

Who Pays Short-Term Disability in Florida?

Short-term disability after a car accident may be available if you have an STD insurance plan. The insurance company pays for your lost wages during your disability period. Many employers offer these insurance policies to their employees; however, you can use the policy whether you are hurt at work or not. Other people select their own commercial plans.

How Much Does Short-Term Disability Pay in Florida?

STD only pays a percentage of your wages, depending on the policy details you have — plans typically pay 50-60% of your average weekly wage.

The insurance company will determine your average weekly wage by looking at your salary or hourly rate and the amount of overtime you work. If you earn a salary, your annual salary will be divided by 52, the number of weeks in a year.

What Does Short-Term Disability Cover in Florida?

Short-term disability insurance pays you for lost wages. It does not cover medical expenses, property damage, pain and suffering, or other losses after a car accident.

Long-Term Disability After a Car Accident

If your STD insurance expires and you are still not fully healed, you may qualify for long-term disability insurance. If you cannot work and have an LTD policy, you will likely be eligible for LTD benefits. Like STD, long-term disability insurance is often provided by an employer but does not require a work-related injury.

You may also have LTD insurance through a commercial policy outside of your employer.

Like STD, LTD often covers a percentage of your income. It is also limited in time, typically starting after your STD ends. It covers lost wages and usually expires after one year or a similar amount of time.

Can I Get SSDI After a Car Accident?

You may be able to get Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) after a car accident. These programs provide income assistance to people with long-term injuries or who were permanently disabled by crash in Fort Lauderdale.

How to Qualify for SSDI After a Car Accident in Florida

You may qualify for SSDI (often called SSD benefits) if you are “insured.” That means that you worked enough hours and recently enough while paying Social Security taxes on your earnings. You must also have a medical condition that causes you to be disabled for at least one year or result in death.

How to Qualify for SSI After a Car Accident in Florida

You can still get permanent disability benefits if you didn’t work enough and pay Social Security taxes to qualify for SSDI. SSI is a program that provides income assistance to people with disabilities who have limited income and resources. You must meet the same medical requirements as SSDI.

Injuries that Apply to Social Security Claims in Florida

You can qualify for SSDI or SSI if you have a severe injury that results in disability expected to last at least one year or result in death. The Social Security Administration (SSA) will review your application and determine if you can participate in any type of gainful employment. If you cannot work, you will likely be approved for social security benefits. However, it’s important to know that many claims are initially denied. Don’t give up.

Some examples of injuries that are often approved by the SSA for benefits include:

How to File an SSDI Claim

You must take specific steps when filing for disability after a car accident.

  1. Gather Documents – You will need information, such as your birth certificate, social security number, bank accounts, medical conditions, doctors and other treatment providers, and income.
  2. Submit Your Application – You can apply online, via phone, via mail, or at your local Social Security office.
  3. Wait For a Determination – The State Disability Determination Services office will review your work credits, work activities, and medical conditions to determine if you qualify.

What If My SSDI Claim is Denied in Florida?

Most SSDI claims are initially denied – as many as 70%. However, you should not give up. Many people are approved when they appeal. You can appeal your denied claim to higher levels of the SSA and even to federal court if you feel they make an erroneous decision.

Additional Compensation in Florida: Types and Options

SSDI and other disability benefits are only one type of supplement for your lost wages. You may also be able to get further compensation after a car accident.

Florida requires all drivers to have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance, which will pay for a portion of your lost wages. The amount you are eligible for depends on the maximum policy limit you have selected.

If your losses exceed the limit of your PIP insurance, then you may also be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver. They will be responsible for 100% of the lost wages you’ve suffered due to the crash they caused. Additionally, suppose you have diminished earning capacity, and you’re no longer able to do the work you once could. In that case, the at-fault driver may be responsible for the lifetime wages you have lost.

Why You Should Work with an Florida Car Accident Lawyer

You have many options for recovering lost wages and related damages after a car accident. However, these losses can be hard to calculate, and insurance companies often fight them. You also have a right to disability insurance if you own STD or LTD policies. If you are disabled for at least one year, you may also be able to get social security benefits.

An experienced Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer can help you understand your options for filing for disability and support you no matter what steps you take. Contact David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. today to get started on your case.

Client Testimonials

“…the settlement I received was much higher than anticipated”

Fuchs was my car accident attorney and was very responsive from the first call. I had medical care the next day and the whole process was smooth. They handled everything with the insurance companies and coordinated all of the necessary medical information. It was a long process and in the end the settlement I received was much higher than anticipated I am more than happy and grateful for the outcome.

Sean O.
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“Not only did I get the medical attention I needed but I was compensated handsomely.”

It’s been a long bumpy road to recovery but with David and his office’s help, we finally got it done! Through a great network of professionals, David Fuchs makes a good experience out of what could’ve been quite a headache. Not only did I get the medical attention I needed but I was compensated handsomely. Thank you!

Giovanni G.
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“…they didn’t settle for anything and my boyfriend and I got what we deserved.”

I got in an accident in December 2021 when everyone was short staffed and insurance companies was not responsive. My boyfriend reached out to David F. and what a life changing experience. We had the pleasure of having all our worries handed to professional help. They worked diligently on our case, answered questions when asked and kept us updated on changes. More importantly they didn’t settle for anything and my boyfriend and I got what we deserved. I have dealt with others in the past but David got me the most according to the facts presented and never backed down when the insurance companies tried to make us settle for less. Thank you David, Jessica and the team for all your effort and hard work. I will recommend them to family and friends. [They’re] the best in town!

Sheila N.
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“Best lawyer in Broward County”
Evans P.
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“Mr. Fuchs and his staff were very helpful.”

I highly recommend Law offices of David Fuchs. Mr. Fuchs and his staff were very helpful. The case was handled in a timely manner and I was always informed if there were any changes or updates with my case.

Velouse G.
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“Mr. Fuchs is one of the hardest working attorneys that I know.”

Mr. Fuchs is one of the hardest working attorneys that I know. He is really good at what he does and puts 110% in you case. I have been using him for 19 years now and refer all my friends to him. I can leave him alone with my case and not call him all the time. I know he is working hard in my case. When he has any information he calls me and we go from there. There are not a lot of attorneys I can do that with! If you have any Personal Injuries please do call him. You won’t be disappointed!!

Libby E.
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“I would definitely refer to this firm as the go-to Florida personal injury gurus.”

At first I was afraid…I was petrified! I truly was! But the extensive knowledge, patience and professionalism I received brought me not only such peace and assurance that I was in good hands, but we got through my case like shining stars! David made sure I understood exactly what, when, where, why and [answered] whatever question I had. I would definitely refer to this firm as the go-to Florida personal injury gurus.

Donna M.
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“They have a wonderful team.”

…took care of my well-being [and were] very informative about my situation. [T]hey were on the ball when it came down to settling…I highly recommend David.

Nicholas G.
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“My experience with David Fuchs was awesome.”

I got a really good return… thank you David Fuchs and staff for being so helpful and working so hard to help us, you are appreciated.

Yvette W.
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“This is a great law office.”

The David I Fuchs law office is a group of excellent people that helped to their fullest potential. They treated me with respect and I really appreciate that. This is a great law office.

Jonathan Z.
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“Never did I imagine myself getting into an accident.”

It has been an unexpected journey since stepping foot in Florida. Never did I imagine myself getting into an accident. I just want to thank the staff and all the support. The Therapy the doctors; you guys were awesome and made me feel better in my situation. This the first time I ever experience such a thing but I’m blessed , thankful and behind it all DAVID FUCHS who made it happen for me.

Sade P.
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“They helped tremendously!”

I would totally recommend David to everyone. They’re extremely professional and work in a timely manner. They helped tremendously!

A Boone
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“I highly recommend this man.”

A good man knows, his law 35 years experience. Will get the job done and help you and your family get compensated for you pain and damages. I highly recommend this man. I want to revisit my review and say that Mr. Fuchs always picks up his phone and answer any questions that may pertain to my case. Thank you, David.

N. Hit
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“He was able to settle my case with little to no trouble and did so in a very professional manner.”

David Fuchs was my car accident attorney. He was able to settle my case with little to no trouble and did so in a very professional manner. I would highly recommend him to others.

Samantha D.
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“…all went good and successful. thank you so much for all your help.”

I got into an accident for the first time and I didn’t know what do or how things works, but I was lucky to find a professional and helpful people to guide through this experience.
They did take care of my case all went good and successful thank you so much for all your help.

Karen G.
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“Very professional. Had no problems with communication”
Zuberi L.
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“He was there every time I called and got me a great settlement.”

I was in a car accident and looking for a professional, caring attorney.I was fortunate to find Mr. Fuchs, who helped me through the whole process. He was there every time I called and got me a great settlement.

Joan K.
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“My settlement was fast, fair and professionally handled.”

Had a car accident and needed an advocate to communicate my concerns through my insurance provider. The law office of David Fuchs, was efficient and thorough. My settlement was fast, fair and professionally handled. Would highly recommend giving this office a call if you need legal assistance.

Willie M.
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“A+++++ recommended.”

I want to thank the office of David Fuch’s. A+++++ recommended.

J. Hernandez
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“I could not have asked for a better team by my side.”

They were very helpful. I could not have asked for a better team by my side.

S. Rodriguez
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“They got me my settlement pretty quickly and worked hard on my case for me.”

I was in an accident mid last year and Mr. Fuchs handled my case and his case manager[s] Yessi and Jessica were very informative as to the process. They got me my settlement pretty quickly and worked hard on my case for me. Mr. Fuchs was extremely knowledgeable and informed me of everything that would happen in my case. I will recommend this firm to my family and friends and i will be using their services in future if need be.

Pastor D.
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