Disability Applications (SSD and SSI)
If an illness or injury (of a physical or mental nature) is impairing your ability to work and earn what the social security administration refers to as a substantial and gainful income, then you may wish to consider filing for disability benefits.
Disability applications fall into two categories: social security disability and supplemental security income benefits, otherwise known as SSI disability.
Which benefit you will be eligible for will depend on whether you have paid enough into the social security system to be considered "insured".
Disability applications for individuals who are insured will be taken in the SSD (social security disability) program and individuals who have not worked enough to either become insured or stay insured (you can lose your insured status if you have large gaps in your work history) will be taken in the SSI program.
Are disability applications treated differently in the two programs. No, they are not. In fact, both types of disability applications are indistinguishable in how they are processed. For both SSD and SSI, disability applications are taken at local social security offices and are then sent to state disability agencies (usually called DDS, or disability determination services) where medical records are gathered and evaluated for the purpose of rendering a decision on a disability claim.
When should you file for disability? Probably as soon as you feel your condition has become severe enough to affect your ability to support yourself. Should you seek representation for your disability case? Typically, most claimants would be advised to find representation at the point at which their case is heard by an administrative law judge at a disability hearing. However, most disability attorneys will usually offer free consultations to claimants who have been denied, have a pending claim, or are simply considering whether or not to file a disability claim with the social security administration.
Return to the Social Security Disability SSI Benefits Blog
Reasons to Apply for Disability
Applications for Disability - SSD and SSI applications
Will you be denied for social security disability the first time you apply ?
Applications for Disability - applying for benefits
How many times will you be denied for disability before you are approved?
Disability applications - how much information should you provide
SSI Applications for Disability Benefits
Does age make a difference on disability applications?
Disability Applications - resource pages
How many people win Disability Benefits from Social Security ?
How do I Apply for Disability Benefits - Notes on filing applications
Do individuals who are approved on disability applications get backpay?