Becoming disabled is a life-changing experience that can seriously impact your financial situation and your ability to work. If you’re in this situation, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can help.
This government program pays benefits to over 8 million eligible individuals with a disability. The program can even provide additional support to your family! More than 1.5 million children receive SSDI payments because they have a parent who is unable to work. Continue reading to learn more about how SSDI can help you and your family.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) uses a couple of basic requirements to determine your eligibility for SSDI benefits. You must:
Typically, your disability must prevent you from working for at least one year. In any case, you could be automatically approved for SSDI benefits if you have a certain disability, such as blindness, spinal stenosis or chronic emphysema, among many others.
Most applicants must have a specific amount of work “credits” to qualify. Your work requirements will depend on your age. The good news is it’s easy to figure out if you’re eligible.
For example, a 30-year-old applicant must have at least 12 work credits, while a 60-year-old applicant must have at least 38 work credits. You get 1 credit for every $1,140 you have earned during your lifetime, and you can earn up to 4 credits each year.
You will retain your eligibility for SSDI as long as you are still considered to be disabled and incapable of performing substantial work. Your case will be reviewed periodically, based on an initial assessment of your medical condition when you apply. If your medical condition is expected to improve, then you will likely be reviewed for continued eligibility within six to 18 months after you begin receiving benefits.
If it is considered possible for your medical condition to improve, then your case will likely not be reviewed for at least three years after you start receiving benefits. If improvement in your medical condition is not expected at all, then your case likely will not be reviewed for at least seven years. If you begin working while receiving SSDI, which is permitted, then the SSA will review your Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) to determine whether you are able to meet their standards.