Kay Derochie has decades of experience as a Social Security claims representative and as a disability benefit analyst. As our Chief Content Editor, she brings a depth of Social Security and disability knowledge to her writings on Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). First serving the public at the Social Security Administration (SSA) office in Miami, Florida and then in Portland, Oregon, Kay guided English- and Spanish-speaking disability claimants through both the SSDI and SSI claim process. Later as a long-term disability (LTD) benefit analyst, Kay determined whether claimants met the required definition of disability. Always keeping her finger on changes in Federal regulations, she assessed whether claimants were likely to qualify for Social Security Disability or SSI benefits so that they could be appropriately referred to the Social Security Administration.
File Your Social Security Application Early Disability Advisor recommends that you file your Social Security Disability application as soon as it appears that you may be disabled for twelve months or that you are not expected to survive for twelve months. Except for compassionate allowances for terminally ill individuals and a few other expedited claims, most disability claims take from three to five months to get a medical decision and longer for benefits to start. Unless you have a clear-cut disability, you might even have to appeal, which would extend the time before an approval even more. So, the sooner...Read more
Supplement Your Income or Get Disability Benefits without Work Credits Supplemental Security Income (SSI) offers a source of income or a source of supplemental income for disabled adults and children and for adults age sixty-five and over who have limited income and assets. The Social Security Administration (SSA) handles SSI claims. In looking at your SSI application, the first thing that your local SSA office will check for is whether your assets and income including in-kind support and maintenance in the form of free or subsidized shelter or food are within the SSI limits. (Note that all income and assets...Read more
How Much You Will Receive and What to Expect after Your Social Security Disability Claim Is Approved
What to Expect after Approval of Your Social Security Disability Claim After you have been found disabled, Social Security’s central payment center double-checks that the earnings record on which you are claiming benefits has enough credits to insure you for Social Security benefits. The payment center then calculates benefits, applying any necessary offsets, pays your attorney or other representatives if you have one, and authorizes your payment. It also decides whether benefits can be paid directly to you or whether you need assistance with managing your benefits Once payment starts, benefits will continue as long as you continue to be...Read more
Can I apply for Social Security Disability while I am still getting sick leave or long term disability from my employer?
Apply Early For Social Security Disability You can apply for Social Security disability while you are receiving sick pay or short-term disability benefits from your employer and while you are using vacation pay or annual leave to cover sick days. You can also apply if you are receiving or expect to receive long-term disability from your employer’s plan. If you think that your disability will last longer than twelve months or that it is expected to result in your death, you should apply for Social Security Disability as soon as possible without waiting for your other benefits to expire. File...Read more
What is Supplemental Security Income Disability—also known as SSI—and how is it different from Social Security Disability Insurance, known as SSDI or SSD?
The Difference Between SSI and SSDI Supplemental Security Income, SSI for short, is a Federal needs-based assistance program for people who are either disabled or over age sixty-five. The Social Security Administration administers both Social Security and SSI Disability, but some of the requirements for SSI eligibility are different from those for Social Security. SSDI requires a certain number of work credits and payment of Social Security taxes. In most cases the SSI program does not require work credits. Only noncitizens in a certain immigration status must have work credits to get SSI. The SSI program, unlike SSDI, requires family...Read more
Factors That Govern SSI Disability Eligibility In addition to either being age sixty-five or meeting the SSI Disability eligibility text, which is discussed in What Medical Conditions Are Required to Meet SSI Disability Qualifications and to Get an SSI Approval? you have to meet several non-medical and non-age requirements to get SSI. Citizenship and Alien Status You must be either a U.S. citizen or national or a qualified noncitizen. A qualified noncitizen is a person who is in an immigration status that allows payment of SSI and who meets other noncitizen requirements. For more information about SSI eligibility requirements for noncitizens,...Read more
Disability Approval Letters and Other Indications of Approval The Social Security Administration will send you a letter telling you whether your application for Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits has been approved or denied; however, an approval letter may not be the first indication that you have been approved on initial claim or reconsideration appeal. If you gave Social Security your banking information for direct deposit, you are likely to receive a deposit to your bank account before you receive a letter. So, if you think that it’s about time for you to get a decision, check your accounts every few...Read more
List All the Conditions That Contribute To Your Disability There are several things you can do to improve the chances for receiving a Social Security Disability approval. First, be sure to list all medical problems you have, regardless of how severe they are or when they began. Include old injuries if you have any ongoing limitations related to the injury. It’s easy to forget limitations that we’ve had for a long time, because we’ve learned to live with them. Sometimes old limitations combined with new problems result in a disability approval. More details about filing for disability can be found...Read more