Many of us take our health for granted; we don’t think much about
disability until something happens to us. According to the Social Security
Administration (SSA), “the chances that you’ll become disabled
probably are greater than you realize.”
In fact, the SSA says that studies show that a 20-year-old worker has a
1-in-4 chance of becoming disabled before he or she reaches full retirement
age – a sobering statistic. That being said, we are going to explain how
Social Security Disability works.
If you have further questions, specifically about your situation, don’t
hesitate to contact our firm to speak with one of our attorneys. We deal
extensively with SSDI and would be more than glad to help answer your
How are disability benefits paid?
The SSA pays disability benefits to individuals through the Social Security
Disability program (SSDI) and the
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, however, these two programs are not the same. For the purposes
of this post, we are going to explain the SSDI program.
The SSDI program pays disability benefits to individuals who cannot work
because they have a medical condition that is expected to last at least
12 months or result in death. Additionally, sometimes a family member
can receive benefits from Social Security if their close relative is disabled.
Eligibility requirements for SSDI:
- You must meet the SSA’s definition of a disability.
- You must have worked long enough and paid into the system, meaning you
must meet the “duration of work” test.
For example, if you are 30-years-old, you will generally need 2 years of
work experience to receive SSDI benefits. If you are 42-years-old, you
will need 5 years of work experience. If you are 60, you must have worked
for at least 9.5 years during your lifetime.
What information will I need to provide?
If you intend to apply for Social Security Disability benefits, you will
need to gather certain documentation for the SSA, such as: your Social
Security number, your birth certificate, the contact information for your
medical providers, the name of all medications you are on, your medical
records, lab and test results, a summary of the type of work you did,
and copies of your most recent tax documents.
Applying for Disability Benefits
When should I apply for disability benefits? We recommend applying as soon
as you become disabled. It can take 3 to 5 months to process an application
for benefits, so you want to begin sooner than later.
For more information about how and when to apply,
contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC!