What is the difference between Occupational Disability Benefits and Total Disability Benefits?
In an occupational disability benefit claim, you have to prove that you can’t go back to your job as a railroader. In a total disability claim, you have to prove that you can’t do any jobs that are available in the national economy whatsoever. There are different eligibility requirements for occupational disability. Occupational disability applies to people who are over 60 that have at least 10 credible years, or people that are under 60 and have 20 credible years. If you don’t have that, then you’re falling back on a total disability claim. It’s very important you contact an attorney to determine what kind of claim you have and how to prove it.
I will add as a note that the judges in your railroad claim often get this mixed up. It’s important that you have an attorney that goes in there that knows what claim they’re proving. I’ve had experience with this before where we’ve actually had to clarify with the judges and tell them what kind of claim it was because they really didn’t understand what they were adjudicating.