Disability And Injury FAQs

Injuries and illnesses that keep from work can cause considerable personal and financial strain. At these times, individuals and families rely on insurance policies to keep them secure. When those benefits are denied, it’s natural to have many concerns and questions. Browse our FAQs to find information and insight from our experienced disability and injury attorneys.

  • Qualifying For Divorced Spouse Benefits
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    A person can receive benefits as a surviving divorced spouse on the Social Security record of a former spouse who died fully insured, if he or she:

    • Is at least age 60, or age 50 and disabled;
    • Was married to the former spouse for at least 10 years; and
    • Is not entitled to a higher Social Security benefit on his or her own record.

    Generally, Social Security cannot pay benefits if the divorced spouse remarries someone other than the former spouse, unless the latter marriage ends (whether by death, divorce, or annulment), or the marriage is to a person entitled to certain types of Social Security auxiliary or survivor’s benefits.

    If the surviving divorced spouse age 60 or over applying for benefits remarried after age 60, or after age 50 and at the time of remarriage was entitled to disability benefits, Social Security disregards the marriage. If a person is already entitled to benefits as an aged or disabled surviving divorced spouse and remarries, benefits continue regardless of the person’s age at the time of remarriage.

    The benefits paid to a divorced spouse or a surviving divorced spouse will not affect the benefit amount paid to other family members who receive benefits on the same record.

    If you would like to receive an estimate of benefits you may receive as a divorced spouse or a surviving divorced spouse, you should contact Social Security at your local District Office. They may be able to provide you with this information over the telephone. If you prefer, you may visit one of the local SSA offices. You can get the address and directions to your nearest office from the Social Security Office Locator that is available on the Internet.

    Here is the contact information for the Pensacola, Florida SSA Office:
    411 W GARDEN STREET
    PENSACOLA, FL 32502
    Phone: 1-877-505-4550
    TTY: 1-850-432-4625
    Hours:

    Monday 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
    Tuesday 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
    Wednesday 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
    Thursday 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
    Friday 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
    Saturday Closed
    Sunday Closed

  • Other Social Security Disability Benefits If You Win Your Case
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    If you are approved for Social Security disability insurance (SSDI or SSD) benefits, you may be eligible to receive more than just a monthly cash benefit. You may also qualify for a “lump sum” back payment and Medicare (however, there may be an additional wait time before Medicare starts.
    [Note: If you have been approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, see our article on SSI benefits.]

    Monthly Payments

    The monthly benefit amount for SSDI is determined by the claimant’s work history and the amount he or she contributed though payroll taxes to the Social Security system. Learn more about how much your may receive in SSDI benefits.

    Lump-Sum Back Payments

    If your claim takes a long time to process, you will not be limited to benefits from the approval date going forward. You are eligible to receive past due benefits, or “backpay,” for the time during your application and appeal period, which is payable in a lump-sum payment.

    You can receive back pay from the date you filed your application, plus as many as 12 months of benefits before the application date. Whether you qualify for an additional full year of backpay depends on your “alleged onset date” or when you became disabled. Your disability onset date is the date your disability is determined to have started. This date determines your date of entitlement to benefits. In an SSDI claim, your actual entitlement date is five months after your disability (due to a five-month waiting period for SSDI). So if your disability onset date is 17 months ore more before the date of your application, you will receive a full year of backpay benefits. In some cases, the amount of backpay can amount to thousands of dollars simply because disability cases often take so long to be decided. Click here to learn more about backpay in Social Security disability cases.

    Medical Benefits

    You are eligible to receive Medicare benefits two years after you become eligible for Social Security disability insurance benefits. Note: This does not necessarily mean that Medicare benefits are available two years after you are approved for SSDI or two years after the payments finally begin. Instead, you will receive Medicare benefits two years after your eligibility for SSDI benefits has been established (in other words, two years after your date of entitlement). Remember, your date of entitlement is your disability onset date plus the five month waiting period.

    For example, let’s take someone who stopped working on December 31, 2009 due to a disability. He does not apply for Social Security disability until January 1, 2011, and alleges a disability onset date January 1, 2010 in his claim for benefits. The claim takes two years and is finally approved on January 1, 2013. In this situation, the claimant’s “date of entitlement” is June 1, 2010, which is five months after January 1, 2010. Under these facts, the claimant is also eligible for Medicare as of June 1, 2012. This is two years after the date of entitlement of June 1, 2010 (or two years plus the five-month waiting period that applies to all Social Security disability cases).

    In many cases, because the Social Security Administration takes so long to decide cases, you may be approved for Medicare benefits around the same time you are approved for SSDI benefits. In other words, because many claims take two years to get to a judge, you may have already “served” the required two-year wait for Medicare benefits by the time you receive your first Social Security disability check.

    Auxiliary / Family Benefits

    You may be eligible to receive additional benefits for your spouse or minor or disabled children. These are commonly referred to as “auxiliary” SSDI benefits.

    For more information on applying for disability benefits or appealing a denial, call Pensacola attorney Nick A. Ortiz for a free case evaluation.

  • How Long Does an Appeal For Social Security Disability or SSI Take?
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    I just received a denial letter on my application for Social Security disability benefits. It is titled a Notice of Decision. I am unable to work at a full time job and intend to appeal the denial.

    How long will the appeal process take?

    The short answer is that there is no set time limit to process an appeal and there is no way to know exactly how long a disability appeal in a Social Security disability claim will take. This is so for several reasons.

    First, disability cases do not have deadlines.

    That being said, the Social Security district office will often say that it may take 90-120 days to process an initial application.  In Pensacola, Florida, Requests for Reconsideration (the first appeal) typically take 30-120 days to process. If the Request for Recon is denied and a Request for Hearing Before an Administrative Law Judge is filed, it typically takes 13 months for the hearing to actually take place.

    Second, all cases are different.

    A claimant’s impairments and medical evidence are unique. Some conditions are easy to classify as disabling, while others take longer.

    Third, it depends on who is reviewing your case.

    Sometimes a case is assigned to a DDS claims examiner or Administrative Law Judge who takes longer to process claims than others.  Your claim may be assigned to a claims examiner or ALJ who has three hundred cases to process, or your claim could be assigned to an examiner or judge who only has seventy-five claims to process. In short, the time to process your case may come down “the luck of the draw”.

    Fourth, most states require that claimants who want to appeal must first file a Request for Reconsideration with the state disability determination agency before having a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge.

    You must file a Request for Recon in Florida, but you can skip the Reconsideration stage in Alabama.

    If you live in one of the states that do not require the reconsideration step (notably, Alabama around here), you can file a Request for Hearing within 60 days of receiving an initial denial or Notice of Determination.

    Reconsideration requests are typically completed in thirty (30) to ninety (90) days in the Pensacola, Florida area, and hearings before Judges are usually set about ten to fifteen months after a hearing is requested.

    Click here to learn more about the Social Security Disability Appeal process.

  • How Much Money Will I Receive If I Win My Disability Claim?
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    The answer to this question depends on many factors – most importantly, it depends on how much you paid in Social Security taxes on your earnings over your career.

    The best place to find an estimate of your monthly benefit would be to download your personal Social Security Statement.  You may recognize the form on the right as the green form you used to get in the mail every year around your birthday from the Social Security Administration. You have not received this the last couple of years because of budget cuts. It cost the SSA lots of money to print and mail the forms. However, now you can go to the SSA website and download a copy of Your Social Security Statement.

    Simply go to http://www.ssa.gov/

    Click on the first link/image that says “My Social Security”. [Note: On lower right side you will see the familiar old green form titled “Social Security Statement”.]

    Click “Create an Account”.

    Follow the steps to verify your identity and create an account.

    Once you have verified your identity, you will be given the opportunity to download your Statement. The second page of the form has a line that tells you how much you would receive if you are found disabled and how you are eligible to receive in retirement per month.

  • What happens if I lose a hearing before a judge?
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    What can I do next?

    You have the right to file an appeal with the Appeals Council. Any appeal should be filed immediately following the denial by the Administrative Law Judge as you only have 60 days from the date on the decision to file your appeal.

    In the alternative, you have the right to reapply and start a new Social Security claim. Unfortunately, you can no longer file an appeal and file a new application at the same time anymore.

    Click here for more information about the Appeals Council level of appeal.

  • What is a Claims Representative (CR) in a Social Security Disability Claim?
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    A Claims Representative (CR) works in the District Office and assists individuals in establishing entitlement to disability under the Social Security SSDI and SSI programs of benefits. The CR has contact with the public either in face-to-face interviews or by telephone. These contacts allow the Claims Representative to obtain, clarify and verify information which will be used to analyze disability claims and make decisions regarding entitlement to benefits.

    The Initial Interview/Application

    A Social Security claims rep conducts initial interviews with Social Security disability claimants. As stated above, the CR may do these interviews in person or by phone. In the initial interview, the Social Security Claims Representative will collect information on your medical sources, work history, and education background. Once the CR has completed the interview, the claims representative continues the initial processing on your claim.

    Preliminary Eligibility Check

    The claims representative will perform a preliminary eligibility check to verify your eligibility for either Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or SSI.  Your eligibility for SSDI depends on the number of years you’ve worked at a job and payed your FICA taxes. Your SSI eligibility does not depend on your work history, but it does depend on the amount of income and assets your household has.

    Substantial Work Test

    The CR will also check to see whether you have been working. If you have been working, the claims rep will review whether you have been working at the substantial gainful activity (SGA) level. If you have consistently been working at SGA, you may be disqualified from disability benefits. Social Security considers income over $1,040 per month (in 2013) to be SGA.

    Submission to Disability Determination Services (DDS)

    If you pass all of the above tests, the claims representative will send your disability claim to your state disability agency, or Disability Determination Services, for a medical disability determination. At this point, the claims representative may expedite your claim under certain limited circumstances.

    Expedited Claims

    If you have a medical condition that is specifically listed on the Compassionate Allowances List (CAL), you have a terminal illness (TERI), or your case otherwise qualifies for a quick disability determination (QDD), the claims representative should identify your application to Disability Determination Services (DDS) in a way that alerts DDS that your claim qualifies as a CAL, TERI, or QDD case, to expedite your claim. For more information, see our section on expedited disability benefits.

    Advance Disability Payments

    If you have applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and the claims representative sees from your application (or from personal observation) that you have a serious medical condition that qualifies for advance payment of disability, the CR can grant you “presumptive” disability payments. For example, if you have multiple herniated discs with nerve room impingement, a double leg amputation, total blindness or deafness, or are confined to a wheelchair, you may be eligible for presumptive disability payments. See our article on presumptive disability (which is only available to SSI applicants) for more information .

    Status Checks

    While your Social Security disability claim is being reviewed and processed, you may contact your claims representative to supplement your claim with additional information or to check the status of your disability claim.

    Final Eligibility Check

    Once DDS has made a medical decision on your claim, the claim will be returned to your local Social Security district office. If your claim has been determined to be medically eligible for disability, the claims representative will again check to see whether you have worked and performed SGA since you filed your application for disability benefits and whether you still qualify financially for SSI. This is because it can take several months for you receive a decision after you’ve filed for benefits.

    If your claim is denied because you were found not medically disabled, you will be sent a denial letter, and you can appeal the decision.

  • How Long Does a Social Security Appeal Take?
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    The evaluation of an appeal in a Social Security disability claim can take anywhere from a few months to two years. It really depends on several factors: from the jurisdiction where you live to which individual Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) hears your case. However, generally speaking, the following is a guideline of how long each stage of the disability process takes:

    • It typically takes 3 to 4 months from the time you apply until you receive the first decision. If you are denied, in Florida you have the right to file a Request for Reconsideration.
    • If you file a Recon Request, it could take another 3 or 4 months to receive the Notice of Reconsideration.
    • If you are denied on Reconsideration, you will file a Request for Hearing. It can take another 12 to 18 months before you have a Hearing before an ALJ.

    After the hearing, you will typically receive a copy of the ALJ’s decision anywhere from 1-to-2 months to many months, depending on the ALJ.

    Again, these are very rough estimates because Social Security’s wait time lines are constantly changing and the SSA’s procedures are constantly changing. Moreover, the case load that Social Security is processing to deal with can be very high.

  • Does Cancer Qualify For Social Security Disability?
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    I have been diagnosed with cancer. I am presently disabled and unable to work a full time. However, my oncologist doctor feels I should be able to work again after my chemo and radiation treatment. Should I apply for Social Security Disability benefits?

    If your condition is expected to keep you out of work for at least twelve (12) months, then you you should apply for Social Security Disability benefits.

  • Are Certain Conditions Automatically Approved for Social Security Disability?
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    I really need my disability claim to be approved right away and need to know if I will automatically be eligible for disability. Are there certain medical conditions, illnesses or diseases that are guaranteed to be approved automatically?

    Answer: There are no “automatic” wins in disability. That being said, some conditions are more likely to win than others, and some conditions are more likely to win earlier in the disability review process than others.

    The Listing of Impairments

    The Listing of Impairments describes impairments for each of the major body systems that Social Security considers severe enough to prevent a claimant from doing any gainful activity, regardless of his or her age, education, or work experience (you can find these impairments on our website in our article on the disabilities “Listings”). Disability claimants who “meet” or satisfy all of the the severity requirements for one of these listed conditions can be approved for benefits somewhat easily. However, the disability evaluation process, even for these “listing-level” impairments, is never automatic as nothing is ever guaranteed with Social Security.

    Each body system section in Parts A and B of the Listing of Impairments is in two parts: an introduction, followed by the specific listings. The introduction to each body system contains information relevant to the use of the listings in that body system; e.g., examples of common impairments in the body system and definitions used in the listings for that body system. The specific listings follow the introduction in each body system, after the heading, “Category of Impairments.” Within each listing, Social Security specifies the objective medical and other findings needed to satisfy the criteria of that listing. If the criteria required to qualify for the listed condition are not evidenced in the medical records (for example, the doctor’s office did not produce required test results or otherwise left out important information), the claimant will be denied benefits even though his or her condition is one listed as medically eligible for Social Security benefits. Social Security will, of course, have to include a rationale in the denial letter as to why benefits were denied, and the claimant can submit the missing information in an appeal for reconsideration review.

    Social Security will find that an impairment(s) meets the requirements of a listing when it satisfies all of the criteria of that listing, including any relevant criteria in the introduction, and meets the duration requirement.

    Most of the listed impairments are permanent or expected to result in death. For some listings, Social Security states a specific period of time for which an impairment(s) will meet the listing. For all others, the evidence must show that an impairment(s) has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of at least 12 months.

    If an impairment(s) does not meet the criteria of a listing, it can medically “equal” the criteria of a listing.

    If a claimant’s impairment(s) does not meet or medically equal the criteria of a listing, Social Security may find that he or she is disabled or still disabled at a later step in the sequential evaluation process.

    If the claims examiner at DDS finds that there is sufficient medical evidence in your record to qualify for benefits under a Listing of Impairment, your file will be sent back to the field office to make sure that you are still eligible for SSDI or SSI and that you still are not working above the SGA level. If this final check goes well, your file will be sent to a payment center and you will be sent an award notice with an estimated date of when your payments will begin (for SSDI, this will be after the five-month waiting period). Finally, you will receive your first disability check and any past due benefits owed.

    Compassionate Allowances

    Social Security recognizes that it has an obligation to provide benefits quickly to applicants whose medical conditions are so serious that their conditions obviously meet disability standards.

    Compassionate Allowances (CAL) are a way of quickly identifying diseases and other medical conditions that invariably qualify under the Listing of Impairments based on minimal objective medical information. Compassionate Allowances allow Social Security to target the most obviously disabled individuals for allowances based on objective medical information that it can obtain quickly. Compassionate Allowances is not a separate program from the Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income programs.

    CAL conditions are selected using information received at public outreach hearings, comments received from the Social Security and Disability Determination Services communities, counsel of medical and scientific experts, and Social Security’s research with the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Also, Social Security considers which conditions are most likely to meet its current definition of disability.

    As of 2013, Social Security has held seven Compassionate Allowances public outreach hearings. The hearings were on rare diseases, cancers, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and stroke, early-onset Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, schizophrenia, cardiovascular disease and multiple organ transplants and autoimmune diseases.

    As a result of the foregoing, Social Security has identified the following list of Compassionate Allowances Conditions:

    • Acute Leukemia
    • Adrenal Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Adult Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
    • Adult Onset Huntington Disease
    • Aicardi-Goutieres Syndrome
    • Alexander Disease (ALX) – Neonatal and Infantile
    • Allan-Herndon-Dudley Syndrome
    • Alobar Holoprosencephaly
    • Alpers Disease
    • Alpha Mannosidosis – Type II and III
    • Alstrom Syndrome
    • Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma
    • Amegakaryocytic Thrombocytopenia
    • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
    • Anaplastic Adrenal Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Angelman Syndrome
    • Aortic Atresia
    • Aplastic Anemia
    • Astrocytoma – Grade III and IV
    • Ataxia Telangiectasia
    • Batten Disease
    • Beta Thalassemia Major
    • Bilateral Optic Atrophy- Infantile
    • Bilateral Retinoblastoma
    • Bladder Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable or unresectable
    • Breast Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable or unresectable
    • Canavan Disease (CD)
    • Carcinoma of Unknown Primary Site
    • Caudal Regression Syndrome – Types III and IV
    • Cerebro Oculo Facio Skeletal (COFS) Syndrome
    • Cerebrotendinous Xanthomatosis
    • Child Neuroblastoma – with distant metastases or recurrent
    • Child Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma – recurrent
    • Child T-Cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma
    • Chondrosarcoma – with multimodal therapy
    • Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML) – Blast Phase
    • Congenital Lymphedema
    • Cornelia de Lange Syndrome
    • Corticobasal Degeneration
    • Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) – Adult
    • Cri du Chat Syndrome
    • Degos Disease – Systemic
    • DeSanctis Cacchione Syndrome
    • Dravet Syndrome
    • Early-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease
    • Edwards Syndrome (Trisomy 18)
    • Eisenmenger Syndrome
    • Endometrial Stromal Sarcoma
    • Endomyocardial Fibrosis
    • Ependymoblastoma (Child Brain Tumor)
    • Erdheim Chester Disease
    • Esophageal Cancer
    • Ewing Sarcoma
    • Farber’s Disease (FD) – Infantile
    • Fatal Familial Insomnia
    • Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva
    • Follicular Dendritic Cell Sarcoma – metastatic or recurrent
    • Friedreichs Ataxia (FRDA)
    • Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD), Picks Disease -Type A – Adult
    • Fryns Syndrome
    • Fucosidosis – Type 1
    • Fukuyama Congenital Muscular Dystrophy
    • Fulminant Giant Cell Myocarditis
    • Galactosialidosis – Early and Late Infantile Types
    • Gallbladder Cancer
    • Gaucher Disease (GD) – Type 2
    • Glioblastoma Multiforme (Adult Brain Tumor)
    • Glioma Grade III and IV
    • Glutaric Acidemia – Type II
    • Head and Neck Cancers – with distant metastasis or inoperable or unresectable
    • Heart Transplant Graft Failure
    • Heart Transplant Wait List – 1A/1B
    • Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis (HLH) – Familial Type
    • Hepatoblastoma
    • Hepatopulmonary Syndrome
    • Hepatorenal Syndrome
    • Histiocytosis Syndromes
    • Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome
    • Hydranencephaly
    • Hypocomplementemic Urticarial Vasculitis Syndrome
    • Hypophosphatasia Perinatal (Lethal) and Infantile Onset Types
    • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome
    • I Cell Disease
    • Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
    • Infantile Free Sialic Acid Storage Disease
    • Infantile Neuroaxonal Dystrophy (INAD)
    • Infantile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinoses
    • Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC)
    • Jervell and Lange-Nielsen Syndrome
    • Junctional Epidermolysis Bullosa – Lethal Type
    • Juvenile Onset Huntington Disease
    • Kidney Cancer – inoperable or unresectable
    • Krabbe Disease (KD) – Infantile
    • Kufs Disease – Type A and B
    • Large Intestine Cancer – with distant metastasis or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Late Infantile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinoses
    • Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) Recipient
    • Leigh’s Disease
    • Leiomyosarcoma
    • Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome (LNS)
    • Lewy Body Dementia
    • Lissencephaly
    • Liver Cancer
    • Lowe Syndrome
    • Lymphomatoid Granulomatosis – Grade III
    • Malignant Brain Stem Gliomas – Childhood
    • Malignant Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor
    • Malignant Germ Cell Tumor
    • Malignant Melanoma – with metastases
    • Malignant Multiple Sclerosis
    • Mantle Cell Lymphoma (MCL)
    • Maple Syrup Urine Disease
    • Mastocytosis – Type IV
    • MECP2 Duplication Syndrome
    • Medulloblastoma – with metastases
    • Menkes Disease – Classic or Infantile Onset Form
    • Merkel Cell Carcinoma – with metastases
    • Merosin Deficient Congenital Muscular Dystrophy
    • Metachromatic Leukodystrophy (MLD) – Late Infantile
    • Mitral Valve Atresia
    • Mixed Dementias
    • MPS I, formerly known as Hurler Syndrome
    • MPS II, formerly known as Hunter Syndrome
    • MPS III, formerly known as Sanfilippo Syndrome
    • Mucosal Malignant Melanoma
    • Multicentric Castleman Disease
    • Multiple System Atrophy
    • Myoclonic Epilepsy with Ragged Red Fibers Syndrome
    • Neonatal Adrenoleukodystrophy
    • Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis
    • Neurodegeneration with Brain Iron Accumulation – Types 1 and 2
    • NFU-1 Mitochondrial Disease
    • Niemann-Pick Disease (NPD) – Type A
    • Niemann-Pick Disease-Type C
    • Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia
    • Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer – with metastases to or beyond the hilar nodes or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Obliterative Bronchiolitis
    • Ohtahara Syndrome
    • Ornithine Transcarbamylase (OTC) Deficiency
    • Orthochromatic Leukodystrophy with Pigmented Glia
    • Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) – Type II
    • Osteosarcoma, formerly known as Bone Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable or unresectable
    • Ovarian Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable or unresectable
    • Pancreatic Cancer
    • Paraneoplastic Pemphigus
    • Patau Syndrome (Trisomy 13)
    • Pearson Syndrome
    • Pelizaeus-Merzbacher Disease-Classic Form
    • Pelizaeus-Merzbacher Disease-Connatal Form
    • Peripheral Nerve Cancer – metastatic or recurrent
    • Peritoneal Mesothelioma
    • Peritoneal Mucinous Carcinomatosis
    • Perry Syndrome
    • Phelan-McDermid Syndrome
    • Pleural Mesothelioma
    • Pompe Disease – Infantile
    • Primary Cardiac Amyloidosis
    • Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma
    • Primary Effusion Lymphoma
    • Primary Progressive Aphasia
    • Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy
    • Progressive Supranuclear Palsy
    • Pulmonary Atresia
    • Pulmonary Kaposi Sarcoma
    • Retinopathy of Prematurity – Stage V
    • Rett (RTT) Syndrome
    • Rhabdomyosarcoma
    • Rhizomelic Chondrodysplasia Punctata
    • Roberts Syndrome
    • Salivary Tumors
    • Sandhoff Disease
    • Schindler Disease – Type 1
    • Severe Combined Immunodeficiency – Childhood
    • Single Ventricle
    • Sinonasal Cancer
    • Small Cell Cancer (of the Large Intestine, Ovary, Prostate, or Uterus)
    • Small Cell Lung Cancer
    • Small Intestine Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Smith Lemli Opitz Syndrome
    • Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) – Types 0 and 1
    • Spinal Nerve Root Cancer-metastatic or recurrent
    • Spinocerebellar Ataxia
    • Stiff Person Syndrome
    • Stomach Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Subacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis
    • Tabes Dorsalis
    • Tay Sachs Disease – Infantile Type
    • Thanatophoric Dysplasia – Type 1
    • The ALS/Parkinsonism Dementia Complex
    • Thyroid Cancer
    • Transplant Coronary Artery Vasculopathy
    • Tricuspid Atresia
    • Ullrich Congenital Muscular Dystrophy
    • Ureter Cancer – with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
    • Usher Syndrome – Type I
    • Walker Warburg Syndrome
    • Wolf-Hirschhorn Syndrome
    • Wolman Disease
    • Xeroderma Pigmentosum
    • Zellweger Syndrome
  • How Much Will You Receive in Social Security Disability Back Pay?
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    A very common question that we receive is: “How far back will my benefits go?”

    Your benefits begin the later of: (a) 12 months before the date of application or (b) five full months after the date you were found to be disabled. This is the “date of entitlement” in your case. Many people ask why benefits don’t begin on the date they were found disabled. Social security disability benefits never begin on the date one is found disabled because of the waiting period of five full calendar months. Another rule limits payment of back benefits to 12 months before the date of the application.

    If you are eligible for Supplemental Security Income or SSI benefits, Social Security will pay SSI from the first of the month after a claimant meets all requirements to get SSI. These requirements are:

    (1) you file an application,

    (2) you are disabled,and

    (3) you meet the income and asset requirements of the program.

    Your SSI benefits may also change beginning the first month you are eligible for Disability Insurance Benefits.