While Social Security is typically associated with benefits for retired workers, the Social Security Administration offers five types of benefits relating to disability:

1. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). If you have worked a full-time job and have recently become disabled, you may be entitled to Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. The disability must be severe enough to last for at least a year or to end in death, and must prevent you from working. The amount of benefits is based on the amount of money you paid into the Social Security system during the life of your career. The Administration usually requires employment for five of the last ten years prior to the disability. Spouses and child dependents may also receive a form of benefits. The application process is extremely complex and has strict filing and deadline requirements. Applicants are often initially denied benefits. A Social Security Disability lawyer can help you navigate the system and obtain the benefits you need and deserve.

2. Disabled Widows and Widowers. Disabled individuals who have lost a spouse (or divorced spouse) may be entitled to receive Disabled Widows and Widowers Social Security benefits. To qualify, the individual must be between 50 and 60 years old; meet the administration’s definition of disabled; and have become disabled before or within seven years of the spouse’s death. Additionally, the deceased spouse must have made sufficient contributions to the Social Security system.

3. Child’s Disability Benefits. A child age 17 or younger who is disabled may also receive Social Security benefits. The child must have a mental or physical condition that severely limits the child’s activities. Similar to adults, this condition must be disabling for at least 12 months or be expected to result in death. Income and resources must also fall within eligibility limits.

4. Disabled Adult Child Benefits. Children over age 18 who have become disabled before turning 22 may receive Social Security benefits. The benefits also extend to children under the age of 19 who are in full-time school. To qualify under this benefit, one of the child’s parents must be receiving Social Security retirement or disability benefits, or must have died and worked long enough to collect Social Security. An adult child may also qualify for benefits if he/she was disabled at 18 and received dependent benefits on a parent’s Social Security earning record prior to turning 18. Disabled Adult Child benefits continue as long as the child remains disabled.

5. Supplemental Social Security Income. People who are financially challenged and disabled may also receive Supplemental Social Security Income. This type of benefit is strictly need based. To qualify, you must fall within specific income and asset eligibility limits. There is no requirement to have worked in the past. Individuals who are eligible under the SSI income requirements are also eligible to receive Medicaid.

If you have a disability and believe that you qualify for SSDI or SSI benefits, contact our attorneys today to schedule a free consultation. For over 40 years, we have provided the type of legal assistance disabled persons in the New York City area need to secure Social Security Disability benefits.