Disability Requirements For Social Security Disability Benefits
You must also be considered disabled to be eligible for SSDI benefits. The Social Security Administration determines disability by the following requirements:
- You can no longer perform your former job and
- You cannot perform other work due to your medical condition and
- Your disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year, or result in your death.
The SSA maintains a Medically Approved Listing of Impairments. If your medical condition is on the list, you may automatically qualify for benefits. However, if your disability isn’t on the list, this doesn’t mean you’re not entitled to SSDI benefits.
If you don’t qualify for SSDI benefits, you may be eligible for Supplement Security Income benefits . To be approved, you must be disabled and meet strict asset and income rules.
Who Is Eligible For Social Security Today
The federal government has several different programs that qualify for benefits under Social Security, including social security disability insurance and old-age retirement. To be eligible for Social Security of any kind, you must work in the United States. This applies to citizens of other countries who are currently working in the U.S., or even illegal immigrants if they worked during their time in this country. You must also pay taxes on your income while you are working part of your income is withheld towards Social Security payments automatically, so no additional money will need to be paid by you later when it comes time to collect your benefits.
Appeals And Legal Advocates
Do not be discouraged if you have to appeal your claim for SSDI benefits. You are in the majority. Only 38 percent of first-time applications are approved, meaning 62 percent are denied. The appeals process requires great attention to detail and deadlines. The rules and procedures governing SSDI can be very complicated and confusing. Having an advocate, someone who can help you deal with the paperwork and deadlines involved in the process, is not required, but can be very helpful.
There are four levels in the appeals process: reconsideration hearing appeals council and federal court. It is a step-by-step process, meaning you begin with reconsideration and only move on to the next level if your appeal is denied. If you win your appeal at any step along the way, you will begin receiving benefits.
You can handle your own Social Security appeal or choose a lawyer or friend to help. That person is called a representative and cant collect a fee from you without first getting written approval from Social Security.
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Social Security Disability Requirements: What You Need To Know
Although nobody can predict when an accident or illness might leave you unable to work, there are ways to protect yourself should the unexpected occur.
Social Security disability benefits is one way to secure yourself financially if youre unable to work as a result of injury or illness.
Millions of people rely on Social Security benefits, with the vast majority being retirees and their families.
Statistics show 60 million people, or more than one in every six American residents, collected Social Security benefits in June 2015. While 75 percent of them received benefits as retirees or elderly widows, 18 percent received disability insurance benefits, and three percent received benefits as young survivors of deceased workers.
Its important to know the basics of Social Security disability requirements should you come to need them. Today, we explain these requirements but lets begin by looking at Social Securitys definition of disability.
What Is The Difference Between Ssi And Social Security Disability
What is the difference between SSI and SSDI ? The major difference is that SSI determination is based on age/ disability and limited income and resources, whereas SSDI determination is based on disability and work credits. In addition, in most states, an SSI recipient will automatically qualify for Medicaid.
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Were There When You Get Your First Job
Every time you change jobs, your employer verifies your Social Security number with us. Doing so helps reduce fraud and improves the accuracy of your earnings records, ensuring you get the benefits you have earned.
Employers collect FICA, or Federal Insurance Contributions Act withholdings, and report earnings electronically to us. This is how we track your earnings and is how you earn Social Security retirement, disability, spouses, and survivors coverage for you and your family. A worker earns up to four Social Security credits each year and needs 40 credits, or 10 years of work, to qualify for retirement benefits. Its vital that you work at least 10 years to qualify for Social Security benefits to be based on your own work record.
Opening a free allows you to verify your earnings history and see if you will get Social Security retirement benefits. A secure also lets you estimate future benefits.
Who May Be Eligible
SSDI: A worker who becomes disabled. Also, certain family members may be eligible. These family members, with some limitations not fully described below, may include:
- The workers spouse, if the spouse is caring for their child who is younger than age 16 or who is disabled
- The workers spouse, if the spouse is age 62 or older
- The workers child if the child is younger than age 18. If the child is still in grade school or high school full time, the child can receive benefits up to age 19
- The workers child who is age 18 or older, if this adult child is disabled and became disabled before age 22
- The workers divorced spouse, if:
- The divorced spouse is age 62 or older,
- Was married to the worker for at least 10 years, and
- Is not currently married.
SSI: U.S. citizens and certain legal immigrants who are financially needy. Also, who are at least 65 years old, blind or disabled.
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What Is The Standard For Disability
Who is considered “disabled” for SSI or SSDI benefits?
To receive benefits under either program, you must meet the SSA’s definition of disability. The term disability means that you are unable to engage in substantial gainful activity because of:
- A medically determinable physical or a mental impairment
- Which has lasted or is expected to last for at least 12 months or is expected to result in death.
This standard for disability is described in the below paragraphs.
Disability for adults
In deciding whether you meet the disability requirement, SSA uses a five-step analysis:
Step one: are you working?
If you are working and performing a substantial gainful activity, then you are considered able to work. You are therefore not disabled. The SGA limit is $1,310 per month. If you earn more than $1,310 per month, you are probably not eligible, unless there are special cases. For example, you have intensive job coaching to help you work or you work at a sheltered workshop. If you are not earning significant income, proceed to step two.
Step two: do you have a severe impairment?
You must have a problem which significantly limits your ability to perform basic work activities. The impairment must be expected to last for 12 months or end in death. If you have a severe impairment, proceed to step three.
Step three: does your medical condition match one of SSAs listed impairments?
- Medical findings,
- Signs, and
- Symptoms that must be found for your condition to meet the listing.
What Are The Requirements For Social Security Disability
When most people think about social security benefits, they think about retirement benefits. But social security also has a benefit program for people who have become disabled. You have to meet the requirements for social security disability to be eligible. These benefits help people who havent reached retirement age yet, but they cant go to work due to an injury or illness that has affected them for a prolonged period of time.
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How Do I Apply For Social Security Disability
You can contact your local Social Security office and make an appointment to meet with a representative, apply over the phone, apply online, or let your SSD attorney help you fill out and submit your application. There are a number of forms required, and you must have certain information on hand during the process. While you can fill out and submit your SSD application on your own there is always a risk that you might leave a crucial bit of information out, or neglect to include important information. Having a Sharry & Monfette SSD attorney submit your application gives you peace of mind knowing it is complete, correct, and has the very best chance of approval.
Let Us Help You With Your Social Security Disability Claim
Even if you clearly qualify for SSDI benefits, you shouldn’t be surprised if your application for benefits is denied. Unfortunately, the SSA denies many legitimate claims. If you need help filling out your initial application for benefits or fighting for the benefits you deserve, our Roswell Social Security disability lawyers are here to help. Call our office today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
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How Much Work Do You Need
In addition to meeting our definition of disability, you must have worked long enough and recently enough under Social Security to qualify for disability benefits.
Social Security work credits are based on your total yearly wages or self-employment income. You can earn up to four credits each year.
The amount needed for a work credit changes from year to year. In 2021, for example, you earn one credit for each $1,470 in wages or self-employment income. When you’ve earned $5,880, you’ve earned your four credits for the year.
The number of work credits you need to qualify for disability benefits depends on your age when you become disabled. Generally, you need 40 credits, 20 of which were earned in the last 10 years ending with the year you become disabled. However, younger workers may qualify with fewer credits.
For more information on whether you qualify, refer to How You Earn Credits.
Supplemental Security Income Claims
In contrast to SSDI, the Supplemental Security Income program does not require applicants to pay into the system before drawing benefits. Instead, the non-medical requirements are based strictly on need. There is a so-called means test.
The SSI claims reviewer will review the applicants income and financial assets. If they have too much income or their assets are too substantial, then their disability will be denied on the grounds they do not meet the non-medical requirements.
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Can You Go Back To Your Past Work
If Social Security decides you can do your past work, which can include any job you did in the last 15 years, then your case will be denied. This is where the importance of listing all your treatment sources, conditions, and symptoms really comes to light. Because you will want show as many functional limitations as possible to prove that you cant return to your past work.
If Social Security determines that you cannot go back to your past work, that is a positive development. However, it does not mean you are approved. At that point, a disability examiner or a judge will decide if you can do something else.
Medicare Covers Retirement Benefits
Many think that once you start receiving Social Security retirement benefits, your medical insurance will no longer be covered. This is not true since 1998 when the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act was passed by Congress. Under this act, seniors who were at least 65 years old could receive both their Medicare Part A as well as their Social Security retirement benefits without paying additional premiums for at least part of those benefits.
Although its unclear whether or not this changed other rules regarding social security payments before medicare became available to retirees, it should be noted that all widows/widowers can also receive both of these types of benefits. Retirement benefits make up 38 percent of all monthly social security claims and two-thirds of annual benefit payments totaling $700 billion. The system currently has over 40 million beneficiaries that are retired workers or their spouses/children/survivors. As people continue to live longer, these numbers will only continue to increase.
We Are With Those Who Need A Helping Hand
The Supplemental Security Income program is a program that provides income support to people with disabilities, people age 65 or older, or blind, who have low income and resources. U.S. Treasury general funds, not the Social Security trust funds, pay for SSI.
If you or someone you know may be eligible for SSI, visit to learn more and apply.
What Are The Work History Eligibility Requirements For Ssdi
To meet the work eligibility requirements to qualify for SSDI, you must have worked long enough and recently enough to qualify. Eligibility is based on the number of work credits you have earned. For each quarter of work with income of a certain amount, you can earn one work credit.
The amount of work needed changes, but for example, in 2017, if you earn $1,700 per quarter or more in the year, you would earn four credits for the year.
How many credits you will need to qualify for benefits will depend on your age. These general rules apply:
- Generally, you must have earned 40 work credits with 20 of them having been earned in the last 10 years.
- If you’re younger than 31 years old, you may qualify for SSDI benefits with fewer work credits.
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Eligibility Requirements For Social Security Disability Benefits
Has your ability to work been sidelined due to a serious illness or injury? If so, your solution may lie in the receipt of Social Security disability benefits. If you believe this could be the answer you are looking for, you must meet these eligibility requirements for this helpful program.
To be eligible for disability benefits, you must have enough work credits to qualify. Work credits are earned based on your yearly income. Earn up to four credits annually. The earnings you need for one credit changes every year. In 2016, the amount necessary to earn one credit was $1,260. Generally, you must work enough to have earned 40 credits to be eligible to collect disability benefits. You must earn 20 of those credits within 10 years prior to becoming disabled.
What is a disability?
The Social Security Administration only pays for a complete disability. Further, the agency is stringent with its definition of the term disability. To be considered disabled and eligible for benefits, you must meet the following qualifications:
You can no longer have done the work you did beforeThe SSA decides that you are unable to adjust to other work because of your medical conditionYour disability has lasted or is expected to last at least one full year or will result in your death
The Decision Process
If you fall into one of the following categories, you may be eligible for disability benefits:
Can I Be Too Old For Disability Benefits
We’ve discussed young claimants and the barriers they might face to get SSDI and SSI benefits, but what about an older claimant? If you are less than your full retirement age, but older than 55 years of age, your chances of receiving benefits is greater than a younger worker.
But can you be too old? Yes, if you have reached your full retirement age you cannot qualify for SSDI benefits you will simply get your SSA retirement. For SSI, however, there is no age limitation.
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Financial Requirements To Qualify For Social Security Disability
Obtaining SSD benefits from the SSA will prove difficult if you could reasonably support you and your family while maintaining gainful activity or employment with your current condition. However, if your condition is worsening, you should speak with a lawyer about the most opportune time to apply for benefits as soon as possible.
If you are applying for SSI benefits, you may meet the requirements if you meet the following conditions:
- You are disabled and have never worked
- You are disabled and have not worked long enough to qualify for SSD benefits
- You are disabled, worked at one point and were eligible for SSD benefits, but are not eligible for SSD now because you havent worked in a long time
- Your assets are worth no more than $2,000 or $3,000
Your coverage for SSD benefits can lapse, and at that point, you will need to apply for SSI benefits. Children with physical and mental impairments may also be eligible for SSI benefits.
When To Apply For Benefits
You dont have to wait until you are off work for a year to apply for social security disability benefits. You can apply when its reasonable to think that you will be off work for a year. This could be at any time during that first year. At our firm, we usually file around the 9th month of disability if it looks like treatment and recovery time will continue past the one year mark.
There are exceptions to the rules and different ways of qualifying for each one of these 6 requirements. Feel free to contact us with questions you may have about the process or filing an appeal.
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The History Of Social Security
Social Security was originally called the Old Age Survivors Insurance. Some believe that this name better reflects what the agency does however, since its inception in 1935, the agency has gone through several name changes as well as expansions. In 1939, coverage was expanded to include the survivors of a primary worker and in 1956, disability insurance was added for those that became disabled before turning 22 years old or were still disabled past age 18.