Social Security Disability vs. Early Retirement Benefits

Many disabled applicants nearing the age of 62 ask whether to apply for disability or take early retirement benefits. Here are the implications of each option: Early Retirement Benefits If a disabled worker starts collecting Social Security retirement benefits early, their monthly benefits are reduced for each month before they reach their designated full retirement […]

SSI and Children: Parental Income Deeming

HOW DOES DEEMING WORK FOR A CHILD? If a child is under the age of 18, not married, and lives at home with parent(s) who do not receive SSI benefits, SSA may consider a portion of the parents’ income and resources as if they were available to the child. SSA may also count a portion of […]

Social Security Disability and Chronic Pain   

Many applicants assert chronic pain as a disabling condition. Social Security uses a five step process to determine if chronic pain qualifies an applicant for benefits. 1)  Is the applicant engaging in substantial gainful activity according to the SSA definition?  If applicant earns more than $1,040 a month, they will be disqualified from receiving benefits. […]

SSDI and Mental Impairments

It can be very difficult to get disability benefits for mental impairments, which include cognitive, emotional, psychological and psychiatric problems. Advancements in medication and treatment options have made living with mental illness more “manageable” in regards to activities of daily living (ADLs) and employment. As such, Social Security has very specific requirements that must be […]

2016 Benefit Updates

This update provides information about Social Security taxes, benefits and costs for 2016.  By law, some numbers change automatically each year to keep up with changes in price and wage levels. SSA UPdate 2016 EN-05-10003 Additionally, here is a helpful SSD facts sheet to print and review. SSD factsheet

SSI Benefits for Children

Frequently Asked Questions What are the disability eligibility requirements for children? The child must have a physical or mental condition, or a combination of conditions, that result in “marked and severe functional limitations.” The child’s condition(s) must have been disabling, or be expected to be disabling, for at least 12 months; or the condition(s) must […]

Social Security Disability and Unemployment Insurance

Can an applicant apply for Social Security Disability while collecting Unemployment Insurance?  The problem with filing for disability while collecting unemployment is that you are asserting that you can work to one agency, while saying you cannot work to another.  This creates a tricky situation! Disability v. Unemployment Claims If you apply for Social Security […]

Why a SSD Claim May be Denied

 Why A Claim May Be Denied: Failing to Follow Doctor’s Orders One of the ways Social Security evaluates the credibility of an applicant’s complaints is to look at whether he or she has complied with their doctor’s recommended treatment. Medical Compliance – what does that mean?  Here is what Social Security is looking for: Are […]

Social Security Benefits and Imprisonment

As a general rule of thumb, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will not pay benefits to someone who is incarcerated. Please read below: Why are disability payments denied (if applicant) or suspended (if recipient) when someone is incarcerated? Disability benefits are intended to provide a disabled person with funds to meet their basic living expenses. If […]

SSD Benefits and Drug Use

 Social Security Disability Benefits and Drug Use  Prior to 1996, applicants were eligible for disability benefits based on alcoholism and drug addiction alone. Since 1996, regulation changes mandate that applications for benefits be denied if drug addiction and/or alcoholism is a contributing factor to the applicant’s disability. How does SSA determine whether drug use is […]