Disability, SSI

There’s Plenty You Should Know About Social Security Disability Benefits!

January 19, 2017 • By

Last Updated: March 17, 2021

woman in wheelchair in library Life is unpredictable. When something interrupts your plans, it’s good to know there’s a way to supplement your income, in case of an unexpected life event.

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.

 


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About the Author

Jim Borland, Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Communications

Comments

  1. Patricia G.

    need to show my employer what I can work as Im on SSD. I advised i can only make so much per month. And they need to have something say I cannot work over 30 hours as I advised them. Where can I get such things.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Patricia. If you are referring to Social Security disability benefits, special rules allow you to work temporarily without losing your monthly Social Security disability benefits. After your nine-month trial work period, we still provide a safety net that allows you to work another three years risk free. During those three years, you can work and still receive benefits for any month in which your earnings do not exceed a certain limit. For 2020 those limits are: $2,110 for blind individuals; or $1,260 a month if you are not blind. For more information on working while receiving Social Security disability benefits, click here. We hope this helps.

  2. EARL N.

    Drug Co-pays are getting out of hand, My wife and I are both on disability if I work part time to help out how my am I allowed to make a month?

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Earl. If you are referring to Social Security disability benefits, special rules allow you to work temporarily without losing your monthly Social Security disability benefits. After your nine-month trial work period, we still provide a safety net that allows you to work another three years risk free. During those three years, you can work and still receive benefits for any month in which your earnings do not exceed a certain limit. For 2020 those limits are: $2,110 for blind individuals; or $1,260 a month if you are not blind. For more information on working while receiving Social Security disability benefits, click here. We hope this helps.

  3. Janelle R.

    Hello,

    I would like to try working very part time. What is the amount of wages I can work before money is taken out of my SSDI? I am 62 and on SS disability.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Janelle. If you are referring to Social Security disability benefits, special rules allow you to work temporarily without losing your monthly Social Security disability benefits. After your nine-month trial work period, we still provide a safety net that allows you to work another three years risk free. During those three years, you can work and still receive benefits for any month in which your earnings do not exceed a certain limit. For 2020, those limits are: $2,110 for blind individuals; or $1,260 a month if you are not blind. For more information on working while receiving Social Security disability benefits, click here. We hope this helps.

  4. SHEILA W.

    In 1985 was diagnose with mental disorder depression i apply for benefit but was denied for 25 yrs plus was approve 2010 how much backpay do i get

    • Luis A.

      Hi Sheila. For your security, we do not have access to your personal information in this forum. For specific questions about your account, please call our toll free number, 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778), from Monday through Friday, between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. You may also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Sheila. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. Generally, you will have a shorter wait if you call later in the day. You can also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  5. Paul R.

    I’m disabled, and it is from head trauma, I’m unable to function at even a fraction of my former self. I can’t even answer 1 question correct on those online iq tests. I know people that would hire me if I was not so dysfunctional.
    I have vision problem botth eyes, and neropathy in both hands and feet. I can barely even type anymore.
    I’m thinking that the reason you people don’t see this as disabled is that you want me and my fmily dead.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Paul. We are sorry to hear about your condition. Social Security pays disability benefits to people if they have a medical condition that has prevented them from working or is expected to prevent them from working for at least 12 months. We use the same five-step process to make a decision on each application.You may also find our listing of impairments useful.

      If you disagree with the decision, you can file an appeal. There are four levels in the appeals process. A reconsideration is the first level. Typically, the length of time it takes to receive a decision on a reconsideration is about 60 days but the amount of time could vary from case-to-case. We reevaluate all evidence, plus any additional evidence submitted and make a new decision. If you disagree with the reconsidered decision, they can choose to go to the next level of the appeals process. We hope this helps.

  6. Greta J.

    I found it very interesting that you say an examiner will come to decide if an injured person can do the work they did previously. My father is almost eligible to get onto social security and I really want to learn more about what he is covered for and what he isn’t, just to be safe. It sounds like the disability benefits could be a complicated process, and professionals might be able to help my dad if he was ever injured. http://www.nbolawfirm.com/workers-compensation-law

  7. Mehedi

  8. Karen c.

    My husband has been on SSSI for a while. November he will become 65. He gets medicare now. Are there any changes he need s to report to your office. Or will nothing change? Karen c.

    • Luis A.

      Hi, Karen. Thanks for your question. If your husband is already getting Social Security benefits, and he is already covered by Medicare, there may not be anything else he may have to do. For specific questions, he can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. Generally, he will have a shorter wait if he calls later in the day. He can also contact his local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  9. Stuart C.

    Thank you for every other informative website. The place else may I am getting that type of information written in such a perfect way? I have a challenge that I’m simply now running on, and I’ve been on the look out for such information.|

    https://www.slideshare.net/kirkdamgaard3/lumion-9-crack-fix

  10. Clarence S.

    Trying to get copy of intittlement letter

    • Luis A.

      Hi Clarence. Good news! If you need a benefit verification letter, you can view, print, and save your benefit verification letter using your personal my Social Security account. We hope this helps.

Comments are closed.