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Can Compassionate Allowances help Michigan residents?

Sometimes a Michigan resident who needs SSD benefits has a serious need due to the nature of his or her disability. Fortunately, the Social Security Administration has what are known as Compassionate Allowances to provide benefits more quickly to those with extremely serious medical conditions when it is obvious that such condition meets the requirements of obtaining Social Security disability benefits.

Through Compassionate Allowances, the SSA can quickly identify those who have conditions that will qualify them for benefits. This program may be of great value for those who are extremely disabled, and allows these persons to only have to provide minimal medical information to help expedite the application process. There is no set wait time for a person seeking benefits through the Compassionate Allowances program, but a decision may be made after only a few weeks, rather than the typical waiting period of months or years. How long a decision takes may depend on how quickly medical information may be obtained, as well as whether a medical examination is necessary to support an applicant's claim.

Conditions qualifying for Compassionate Allowances are determined in part through public hearings. Seven public outreach hearings have been held on conditions ranging from traumatic brain injury and stroke to schizophrenia, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other rare diseases. The SSA plans to continue to add conditions to the Compassionate Allowances list on an annual basis.

The Compassionate Allowances program is not separate from the SSD and SSI programs. It simply is an expedited process through which certain persons may be able to obtain benefits more quickly. If you believe you or a loved one may qualify for benefits through the Compassionate Allowances program, you may wish to seek legal guidance to help you.

Source: socialsecurity.gov, "Compassionate Allowances," accessed Dec. 18, 2015

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