Social Security has a strict definition of disability based on your inability to work and provide for yourself and your family. Disability benefits are available only to people with impairments so severe that they prevent any kind of significant, profitable work. Social Security pays only for total disability. No benefits are payable for partial disability or for short-term disability.
We pay disability via two programs: the Social Security Disability Insurance program, for people who have worked and paid Social Security taxes long enough to be eligible, and the Supplemental Security Income program, which pays benefits based on financial need.
When you apply for either program, we will collect medical and other information from you. Our disability examiners will make a decision about whether or not you can do work that you did before, adjust to other work because of your medical condition, and if your disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or is likely to result in death.
Certain factors may speed or delay the decision in your case, like the nature of your disability and how quickly we can get your medical records. We may also need to send you for an additional medical examination at no cost to you.
If you would like to apply for disability benefits, you can use our online application. It has several advantages, including immediately starting the process, no waiting to get an appointment, and no trip to a Social Security Office. It’s easy, convenient, and secure.
You can find out everything there is to know about disability benefits online.