Do you qualify for Social Security benefits?
To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, a person must be "disabled" according to the definition provided by the federal Social Security Act. A person is disabled if he or she:
- Has a medical condition that is expected to last at least a year, has lasted at least a year or is expected to result in death, and
- Is unable to engage in substantial gainful employment due to an injury or medical condition
The person must not be able to the do work she did previously or any other type of substantial gainful activity that she is qualified to do.
Types of disability benefits under the Social Security Act
Five major types of disability benefits are available under the Social Security Act. Both Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) provide benefits. SSDI is based on the applicant's work history and disability while SSI is based on the applicant's income and disability, old age or blindness.
- SSDI: Disability Insurance benefits are paid to people who have worked long enough to earn sufficient credits under the Social Security system but are now disabled.
- SSDI: Disabled Widow's, Widower's or Surviving Divorced Spouse benefits are paid to people who meet certain age and other requirements. The deceased spouse must have been insured through his or her work record for the living spouse to qualify for coverage.
- SSDI: Childhood Disability benefits are paid to people who are at least 18 years old and became disabled prior to the age of 22. The payment to the child is based on the earnings record of a qualified parent who is retired, disabled or deceased.
- SSI: Supplemental Security Income benefits are paid to low-income recipients who are disabled, blind or elderly and have limited resources.
- SSI: Child's Disability benefits are paid to children up to age 18 who are disabled or blind and whose families meet certain criteria concerning income and resources.
Senich Law Firm represents people throughout the Greater Waterbury area and has more than 20 years of experience dealing with Social Security benefits. Schedule a free consultation to learn how we can help you today.