Social Security Disability Is Already A Form Of Early Retirement Benefits
Updated By Bethany K. Laurence, Attorney
You can’t receive Social Security retirement benefits and disability benefits at the same time . The Social Security disability program exists to provide disability benefits to those who are unable to work as a result of their conditions and who are too young to draw their retirement benefits. In this sense, Social Security disability insurance can be thought of as a retirement benefit for those who are forced to retire early. If you do collect SSDI disability benefits, they will be converted to retirement benefits when you reach full retirement age.
How Social Security Disability Benefits Impact Long
It is possible to receive long-term disability insurance benefits and SSDI at the same time. Some long-term disability insurance policies even require that you apply for SSDI benefits after a specific timeframe so you may be able to continue receiving benefits. After you have been approved to receive SSDI benefits, your long-term disability insurance provider will pay you the difference between your SSDI benefits and your insurance policy amount. The amount of the offset depends on your specific long-term disability plans terms and the amount of SSDI benefits that you receive each month.
Comparison Of Federal Vs State Vs Private Disability Benefits
The inability to work can create personal financial hardship. There are many different programs that can work as financial safety nets if your diagnosis makes it difficult to maintain employment.
Social Security Disability is a federal program administered by the Social Security Administration that provides benefits to people limited by total disability. Disability has two programs within it- SSI and SSDI. SSI is a program designed to assist low-income individuals who may have never worked, or who havent worked enough to earn sufficient work credits for SSDI. SSDI is funded by taxes, so only adults with a work history are eligible. To receive SSDI, your application must show that you can no longer work in your previous occupation, you cannot adjust to a new work environment, and your disability prevents you from being able to return to work for at least a year.
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How Have The Number And Share Of People Receiving Disability Benefits Changed Over Time And What Accounts For These Changes
There has been little change over the past two decades in the share of nonelderly adults receiving Supplemental Security due to a disability. In 2011, 2.4 percent of nonelderly adults received Supplemental Security for a disability, compared to 2.1 percent in 1996. This comparison does not, however, take into account demographic and economic changes, particularly the aging of the population and the increase in poverty, which both have increased the number of people who are potentially eligible for Supplemental Security.
Controlling just for income, participation in Supplemental Security by working-age adults who are potentially eligible because of low income has actually declined over the past decade and a half. In 2011 there were 17.6 nonelderly adults receiving Supplemental Security for every 100 nonelderly adults with incomes below 100 percent of the poverty line, compared to 18.5 nonelderly adults in 1996. In other words, the number of nonelderly adults receiving Supplemental Security grew at a slower rate than the number of nonelderly adults with very low incomes.
The share of nonelderly adults receiving Disability Insurance has increased over time. This is largely due to demographic factors, including:
A number of factors account for this one-percentage-point increase in the disability-prevalence rate after accounting for the changes in the age and gender distribution of the workforce, including the following:
Social Security Disability And Private Disability Insurance
When you become disabled and can no longer work, you may become worried about how to live without income. Many people wonder whether Social Security disability benefits or private disability insurance are options to supplement the lost income and whether you can collect both kinds of benefits if you qualify for them.
Although the Social Security disability program is well-known, the benefits provided through Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income frequently do not pay out enough money to live on, so you probably need to explore additional options.
You can collect disability benefits through Social Security, a private insurance policy, and workers compensation simultaneously. Additionally, some states, including New York, offer temporary disability benefits through their unemployment insurance programs. And you may be entitled to receive veterans benefits, depending on the nature of your disability. If you qualify for more than one of these benefits programs, however, you will likely not be entitled to the full benefit of each one of them.
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Group And Private Insurance
How to get long-term disability insurance? Long-term disability insurance is usually obtained through individual polices or group coverage. Group coverage is offered either through employer-sponsored group coverage or through some other kind of group . As with health insurance, there can be a wide difference in eligibility, cost, and coverage between group and individual policiesmore so because disability insurance, unlike health insurance, is not subject to government regulations on access, equitable treatment, and portability.
Finally, some professional groups offer so-called group coverage. However, it is not like employer-sponsored group coverage because there is at least some underwriting or question-based screening to weed out applicants with health conditions perceived to be risky. The only way this coverage differs from individual coverage may be that the premium is determined solely by the applicants age rather than being individually determined.
For New Orleans Social Security Disability Benefits Call Ascend Disability Lawyers Llc
As can be seen, there is a complex web of legal issues involving in obtaining disability benefits. One must consider all of the requirements to obtain SSDI and other SSA benefits along with issues that might arise by virtue of policies issued private insurance companies. New Orleans and Louisiana are entitled to apply for and receive social security disability benefits if they qualify and to maximize your chances of success, you are going to need an experienced SSDI lawyer like those at Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC. Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC is a leading Louisiana SSDI law firm. We have been helping New Orleans citizen, and the disabled obtain the benefits to which they are entitled for over a decade.
Filed Under: The Ascend Disability Law Blog
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Discovery Of Activities By Surveillance
It is possible that your LTD insurer will arrange a surveillance team to track you for several days. This can include following you on your daily errands and to doctor’s appointments, parking outside your house, and recording you. This can be a disconcerting experience, and LTD recipients should exercise caution when interacting with anyone they suspect to be an investigator. If you’re observed engaging in activities that are inconsistent with your impairments, the insurance company may determine that your condition has improved and your benefits could be discontinued.
Myth: Why Bother I’ll Just Be Denied
Not true for everyone, says William Jarrett, a spokesperson for the Social Security Administration. While Jarrett says standards are strict, and the process is rigorous, the SSA wants to be certain the person is truly disabled and unable to work. And the rejection rate is high, he says.
”The allowance rates for disability claims in fiscal year 2013, the most recent data available, was around 33 percent,” he says. That means 33 percent of the applications received in fiscal year 2013 were approved.
“In my experience, people rarely get it the first time they apply,” says Melissa Proudian, an attorney in Fresno, California, whose primary focus is on Social Security disability cases. But if you’re denied the first time around, you can appeal.
And if the administration determines that you have a true, severe disability, they pay out.
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Can I Get Rid Of Offsets In My Group Ltd Policy
If you have an employer-sponsored group disability insurance plan, you may not remove the offset provisions from your policy. Your employer and the insurance company have already negotiated the terms of your group disability benefit plan. If you have a private individual disability-insurance plan, you may always try to negotiate with your insurer for better features, advantages, and benefits.
Insurance companies have no problem selling insurance policies but are not nearly as friendly when it is time to pay legitimate claims. Those who believe their insurance companies are treating them unfairly or cheating themdue to offsetsshould contact an expert, long-term disability ERISA lawyer to ensure they receive the compensation they deserve.
If your insurer reduces your group disability benefits, it is essential to review your policy with an experienced ERISA lawyer and ensure the carrier takes the correct type and amount of offsets.
When Do Long Term Disability Policies Pay Benefits
Most long term disability policies will pay a percentage of your income when you cannot work due to health reasons. Generally, you must be out of work three to six months before the long term disability benefits will kick in.
But, beware, some long term disability policies will actually limit the length of time that you can get your long term disability benefits. So, for example, if you suffer from fibromyalgia, a psychiatric condition, or even soft tissue muscular-skeletal problems, your policy may limit the payment of those benefits to just 24 months.
You should understand your benefits package so that you can provide you and your family with peace of mind if you become disabled. You can learn more about the disability provisions that you dont want to see in your disability policy by ordering a copy of Robbed of Your Peace of Mind.
Why Is There A Shortfall In The Disability Insurance Trust Fund And What Can Be Done About It
As described above, Disability Insurance is funded by a dedicated share of payroll tax contributions0.9 percent of taxable wages paid by workers and the same amount by employers. Since the mid-1990s the Social Security Administration has consistently projected that the Disability Insurance trust fund would have sufficient reserves to cover all scheduled benefits until 2016, but that after that date, additional funds would be needed to avoid a shortfall in the necessary funds to continue paying full benefits. If no action is taken to address the shortfall, the Disability Insurance trust fund will only be able to pay 80 percent of scheduled benefit levels after 2016.
Congress has addressed similar shortfallsin both the Disability Insurance trust fund and the Old Age and Survivors Insurance trust fund, which pays retirement benefitsnearly a dozen times in the past by temporarily reallocating the share of overall payroll tax revenues that is dedicated to each trust fund. In some cases, they have reallocated funds from the Disability Insurance trust fund to the Old Age and Survivors Insurance trust fund in others, they have reallocated funds from the Old Age and Survivors Insurance trust fund to the Disability Insurance trust fund.
Benefits For People With Disabilities
The Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability programs are the largest of several Federal programs that provide assistance to people with disabilities. While these two programs are different in many ways, both are administered by the Social Security Administration and only individuals who have a disability and meet medical criteria may qualify for benefits under either program.
Social Security Disability Insurance pays benefits to you and certain members of your family if you are “insured,” meaning that you worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes.
pays benefits based on financial need.
When you apply for either program, we will collect medical and other information from you and make a decision about whether or not you meet Social Security’s definition of disability. Periodically, we will need updated information about your condition. You may receive a Disability Update Report . This form can now be completed online.
Use the Benefits Eligibility Screening Tool to find out which programs may be able to pay you benefits.
If your application has recently been denied, the Internet Appeal is a starting point to request a review of our decision about your eligibility for disability benefits.
If your application is denied for:
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Offsets For Other Forms Of Income
In addition to deducting Social Security disability benefits, the vast majority of LTD policies offset other forms of income such as state short-term disability benefits, workers’ compensation benefits, and third-party settlements . Common sources of income that are not offset include 401 plans, individual retirement accounts, severance packages, stock options, and profit-sharing plans.
Occasionally the amount of a recipient’s deductible income, whether from Social Security or other sources, actually exceeds the monthly LTD payment. In these instances, rather than paying you nothing, most policies provide for a minimum monthly benefit of $50 or $100 that a person can collect regardless of the offset amount.
Benefits For A Disabled Child
A child under age 18 may be disabled, but we don’t need to consider the child’s disability when deciding if he or she qualifies for benefits as a dependent. The child’s benefits normally stop at age 18 unless he or she is a full-time student in an elementary or high school or is disabled.
Children who were receiving benefits as a minor child on a parents Social Security record may be eligible to continue receiving benefits on that parents record upon reaching age 18 if they are disabled.
Dual Benefits Are Possible
You can qualify for and collect both private disability insurance benefits and SSDI benefits, but its important to note that your SSDI benefits will cut into your private disability insurance benefits.
So, whats the point?
With an offset rider, the premiums on your private disability insurance policy will be lower than they would be otherwise. Depending on your tolerance for risk, you can lower the immediate cost of your private disability insurance policy while maintaining the same level of benefits.
Have You Heard Of Erisa
If your employer provides your group disability insurance plan, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, or ERISA, likely governs its provisions. ERISA defends the interests of employee benefit plan beneficiaries. ERISA creates certain requirements, by which plan sponsors must abide. Though ERISA is a complex system of federal provisions, the overarching requirements are relatively straightforward. These requirements include:
- Providing accurate plan information to policyholderswhat is and is not covered
- Standards of conduct for plan managers and other fiduciaries
- Enforcement provisions that help to shield plan funds so that qualifying beneficiaries receive the benefits to which their plans entitle them.
- Providing policyholders with directions on how to file a claim, in the event that the policyholder becomes disabled
- An outline of the appeals process, in the event, that an insurance company denies a group policyholders claim
The protective laws of ERISA only apply to private employers that offer certain benefits, including disability insurance coverage. ERISA does not require employers to provide any plans to employees. But when they choose to provide certain benefit planslike disability insuranceERISA sets minimum standards for them.
ERISA, however, has become a complex system for both employers and employees. For group policyholders of ERISA disability insurance plans, ERISA establishes strict rules for filing claims and for appealing denials.
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Social Security Disability Evaluation Process
While there are some conditions that the Social Security Administration considers so severe that they automatically render an applicant disabled, many conditions require careful screening, including answering these five questions:
In addition, qualifying conditions must be expected to last at least one year or result in death.
What Is The Difference Between Long Term Disability Insurance And Ssdi
Social Security Disability Insurance is government-sponsored disability coverage included in your Social Security benefits. However, unlike Social Security retirement benefits, SSDI benefits are considered harder to qualify for compared to an individually-owned long term disability plan purchased individually or through work2. Most SSDI applicants are actually rejected2 and if they receive Social Security disability benefits, the amount received may not be much higher than the Federal poverty level of $1,063/month.
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How Much Coverage Can I Qualify For
Make sure the monthly benefit amount will be enough for your needs. You typically cant qualify for more than 80 percent of your salary, but since the benefit of an individual policy isnt usually taxed that may be more than enough. However, some group policies will cover only 40-60 percent of your salary and its often taxable. In that case, you may want to consider getting a supplemental disability policy through your employer or an individual policy.