Know Your SSDI Benefits
Most people know that Social Security provides disability benefits for U.S. workers who become disabled before retirement age. But, many people have questions about the details, such as:
- Who can get Social Security disability benefits?
- How is the amount determined?
- Do SSDI recipients get any other benefits?
- Can you lose SSDI benefits?
Here’s a quick overview of the key information.
Eligibility for Social Security Disability
There are two parts to qualifying for SSDI:
- The applicant must have sufficient work credits to qualify (there is an exception for those who become disabled as children, who may qualify based on a parent’s work record)
- The applicant must be unable to engage in substantial gainful activity due to a medical condition that will last at least a year or be terminal
How are Social Security Disability Benefits Calculated?
Social Security benefits are based on your average earnings across your working life. The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides calculators to help you determine how much you may qualify for in various types of benefits. However, you should be aware that certain other types of benefits, such as workers’ compensation benefits, may impact your Social Security Disability.
In 2023, the maximum possible SSDI benefit is $3,627/month. But, the average monthly benefit is less than half of that.
What Other Benefits are Associated with SSDI?
Depending on your family circumstances, your dependents may be entitled to Social Security benefits if you are receiving SSDI. Generally, your spouse must be 62 or older or caring for your child who is under the age of 16 or disabled. These benefits may even be extended to a former spouse if you were married for at least 10 years, they are currently unmarried and they are 62 or older.
Your children may also be entitled to benefits if they are under 18, or are under 20 and still in high school. Under limited circumstances, grandchildren who are living with you may also be eligible for benefits.
After two years of receiving Social Security disability benefits, you will automatically become eligible for Medicare, regardless of your age.
How Long Do You Receive Disability Benefits?
For most people, SSDI benefits continue until the recipient reaches full retirement age. At that point, they are automatically transitioned to Social Security retirement benefits. However, Social Security disability benefits continue only as long as the disabling condition persists. For example, someone who received SSDI due to disabling cancer, but was successfully treated and recovered, would no longer be eligible after recovery.
Some recipients also voluntarily transition off of disability benefits through the Social Security Administration’s Ticket to Work program.
Get the Help You Need With SSDI
Of course, the most important thing about Social Security disability benefits is securing them as quickly and efficiently as possible. Many people wait to seek help until after they’ve been denied, but working with an experienced disability benefits advocate from the beginning can help ensure you submit the strongest application possible. To learn more about how Disability Help Group can help, contact us here or call (800) 800-3332 right now.