If a worker has become disabled before retirement age, there are Social Security benefits for which the worker may qualify. The worker may qualify for either Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Each benefit has certain criteria which must be met to establish eligibility.
One basic requirement for SSDI eligibility is that the disabled worker must be “insured.” To be insured, the worker must have paid Social Security taxes into the system for the required number of years. In particular, the worker must have paid into the system for at least 5 of the last 10 years.
A person may qualify for SSI benefits if the person hasn’t worked long enough by the time he or she became disabled. However, the person seeking SSI must have low income or assets. There is no requirement that the person seeking SSI benefits paid into the Social Security system for any period of time.
In addition to the above-mentioned requirements, there are several other factors that the Social Security Administration considers when determining whether a disabled worker qualifies for either SSDI or SSI. Some of these factors are as follows:
- Is the person disabled?
- Has the person been disabled for a minimum of 12 months?
- Does the person have a severe impairment?
- Can the person still work despite the impairments?
- What kind of work, if any, the person can or cannot perform due the impairments?
- Do jobs exist in the national economy for this person considering the person’s age, education, and work experience?
The Social Security system is an all or nothing system. It is unlike the VA claims system, which awards compensation benefits based on a percentage of service-connected disability. Also, you do not have to be permanently disabled to qualify for Social Security benefits.
If you need monthly Social Security disability benefits, I would like to know more about your situation. Please contact me for a free consultation to discuss your options in applying for your Social Security benefits. If you have already applied for your Social Security benefits, but you have been denied, please contact me. I want to work with you and for you. Social Security benefits can be your benefits. We’ll make it our mission to obtain them for you.