Social Security Disability and SSI: What's the Difference? | Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.
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Social Security Disability and SSI: What’s the Difference?

Living with a disability is hard enough on a day-to-day basis, but when your disability prevents you from being able to earn a living, it can be even more of a challenge to figure out how you’ll support yourself and your family. 

Fortunately, there are government programs such as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) designed to help individuals with disabilities. 

But, having a disability automatically guarantee benefits from these programs. In fact, there are very specific requirements you’ll need to meet to qualify for benefits. Below, we go into greater detail about when you’ll qualify for SSDI and how to get approved for SSI benefits. Hopefully, you have a better idea of which program could help you. 

Social Security Disability Requirements 

Social security disability benefits are considered to be insured because individuals who are employed contribute a portion of their salary to the SSD fund. In order to be eligible for social security disability benefits, you will need to have earned a certain number of work credits. 

The amount of credits needed will depend on your age, but in most cases, you need to have a minimum of twenty credits over the past ten years. 

You will also need to have a qualifying disability. The Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a list of disabilities that are eligible for SSDI benefits, but if your condition is not on this list, that doesn’t necessarily mean you aren’t entitled to benefits. 

Your disability simply needs to be severe enough that it prevents you from doing work in any capacity. If you are able to find gainful employment doing some other line of work, it is quite probable that the SSA will deny your SSD claim.

Qualifying for Supplemental Security Income

Supplemental security income (SSI) is quite similar to SSD in terms of the benefits themselves, but qualifying for SSI is much different. 

In order to be eligible for SSI benefits, you don’t have to have a certain number of work credits, but you do need to be considered low income and have a disabling condition. Your medical condition must prevent you from being able to work in any industry, as with SSDI. If the SSA deems you able to work in another capacity, your SSI claim will probably be denied.

Meet with a SSD and SSI Lawyer in Boston

If you believe you qualify for SSDI or SSI benefits, or if you’ve filed a claim that has been denied, get in touch with a respected Boston SSD and SSI Lawyer at Joel H. Schwartz, PC for help with your claim. 

We provide complimentary consultations to disabled individuals across Boston and its surrounding cities. Take advantage of this opportunity by completing the contact form at the bottom of this page or calling 617-742-1170.

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