What Social Security Programs are Available?
Filing for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security can be a daunting task. We’re here to help you navigate the confusing sea of paperwork and fine print. In our four-part series, we’ll give you the facts to give you peace of mind and the answers you are looking for.
There are 3 major programs within the Social Security Administration.
- Retirement benefits
- Social Security Disability Insurance benefits
- Supplemental Security Income benefits
When you pay FICA taxes either through your paycheck or self-employment taxes, you are paying for a retirement policy, a life insurance policy, as well as a long term disability policy.
How Common is it for the SSA to Deny a Disability Claim?
When you reach retirement age or choose a reduced benefit at age 62, you will receive retirement benefits. The amount will be based on the amount you paid into the system while working.
Download the free eBook 5 Things You Should Know Before You File for Social Security Disability or SSI
At the time of your death, your widow or widower may be able to receive full benefits based on your account. Reduced widow or widower benefits can be received at age 60, or age 50 if the widow or widower is disabled and has not remarried. Your widow or widower will also receive a monthly check until your youngest child is 16 years old or disabled if he or she is not employed and has not remarried. Your minor children (under 18 or 19 and have not graduated high school) can also receive benefits.
If you retire, become disabled, or are deceased and have a disabled child, he or she can receive benefits as long as they prove that they became disabled before the age of 22. In addition, if you have dependent parents, they can receive benefits if they are over 62 years of age.
You and your family can also receive benefits through Social Security if you become disabled. As long as you have worked 5 of the last 10 years and paid into the Social Security system, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (DIB) benefits. You must become disabled prior to your “date last insured.” Think of it as an insurance policy – once you stop making the premium payments, the insurance lapses. Social Security Disability Insurance benefits end if you do not become disabled within 5 years of when you last paid into the system.
Social Security (SSA) defines disability as being unable to perform substantial gainful work activity due to a medical condition or conditions, which will last at least 12 months or which is terminal.
If you have not worked 5 of the last 10 years, or if your monthly benefit would be less than $733.00 in 2016, you may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income benefits (SSI). In order to be eligible for SSI benefits, however, a person must not only be medically disabled but also must meet certain financial limitations. SSI benefits are also available for disabled children when they are disabled and the household income qualifies them for benefits. More about social security benefits for disabled children.
Regardless of whether you are applying for DIB or SSI, you will still need to prove that you are medically disabled.
Next up . . .Determining Disability