What is Social Security Disability Insurance?

Published on: June 11, 2013

Social Security Disability insurance

Social Security Disability Insurance is a payroll tax-funded insurance program used to supplement the income of those who cannot maintain employment due a physical or mental health disability.

In many cases, the program is used by those who have worked for a while, and who have been stricken by an injury or a disease that makes them unable to function adequately at their job - SSDI is there to provide income for them, in place of the income they would normally receive while working.

Qualifying For SSDI

There are many conditions that qualify for the receipt of benefits under Social Security Disability; but having such a condition doesn't always guarantee that one will receive benefits. For instance, depression is one of the conditions recognized by Social Security for receiving such payments; but beyond having the condition, there are more specific traits about your depression that must be shown in order to qualify.

With any condition recognized by Social Security, the individual must be unable to perform "substantial gainful activity" in regard to their employment. Furthermore, the condition has to be expected to last at least one year, have already lasted one year, or be expected to result in death. Furthermore, the individual must be under the age of 66 and have garnered at least 20 social security quarters of coverage in the last 10 years before their injury or illness occurred.

Whether or not you receive disability benefits is directly contingent upon medical evidence of your condition. Symptoms such as pain are considered.  However, your condition must be true to what you claim it is, and it also must be impairing your ability to perform your job functions adequately.

However, if you don't meet Social Security's requirements for a listed condition, you're not completely at a loss yet. Your ability to work is evaluated, along with your age, past relevant work, and education. After taking these aspects of your situation into account, Social Security might be able to make a favorable determination in your case.

The Wait for Approval

The time it takes for your SSDI application to be approved or denied can depend on a number of factors. In most cases, it can take anywhere from 90 to 120 days to receive a decision. Sometimes it can take considerably longer. Many people wonder whether or not they'll receive back pay for the time they have had to wait for their application to be approved. Thankfully the answer usully is yes. Usually, you'll receive back pay to the time in which you applied for benefits. In some cases, people can be awarded back pay to the time in which they were injured / stricken with their condition, with some limitations.

Benefits of Having an Advocate

Whether you're applying for Social Security Disability Benefits, or you've already applied and have been denied, hiring experienced advocates to help you get the funds you need is a highly recommended course of action. In fact, a 2010 report by the Office of the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration showed that people submitting a disability application may benefit from using advocates. So, what are you waiting for? Contact your local disability benefits advocates, today!



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