As regular readers of SS&Y are aware, the Social Security Administration administers 2 trust funds. The Old Age Survivors Insurance (OAS’) fund pays retirement benefits. The Disability Insurance fund (DI) pays disability benefits. When Congress passed and President Obama signed the Bipartisan Budget Act in November of 2015 to reallocate current contributions between the OASI…
The Social Security Administration has announced there will be no Cost of Living Adjustment in 2016 for the nearly 65 million Americans drawing Social Security disability, retirement or SSI benefits. This is because there was no inflation between the third quarter of 2014 and 2015 as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage…
Spring-Summer 2015 Newsletter SSDI Insolvency Looms We’ve known it’s been coming for some time and now it’s on our doorstep. Unless Congress acts the Social Security Disability Insurance Trust Fund (DI Trust Fund) will become insolvent late next year and unable to pay full benefits any longer. Millions of Americans who rely on their disability checks for most, if not all,…
Fall 2014 Newsletter OBAMACARE UPDATE On October 1st it will have been a year since enrollment began in the Affordable Care Act national health insurance program known as Obamacare. The difficulties in the early weeks and months have been well documented. But where are we a year later… Read the Newsletter in PDF format. Read the Newsletter in PDF…
When most people think of Social Security they think of retirement benefits. Full retirement age is currently 66 years of age, but will be advancing in the coming years. Early retirement benefits can be obtained as soon as age 62, however, there is 20% reduction for drawing benefits that early and the reduced amount lasts for life, regardless of how long one lives. So other than the yearly cost of living increase recipients of early Social Security benefits don’t see an increase in their benefits when they reach full retirement age.
Many people are not aware that Social Security has other programs, as well. Disabled persons can draw Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), if they are disabled within Social Security’s rules. These rules cover financial and earnings situations as well as disability status.
To draw DIB benefits a disabled individual must have paid into the Social Security system through payroll taxes in 20 of the 40 quarters of the 10 years prior to becoming disabled. There are no other financial requirements. Assets, other income and spousal assets or income are not considered.
SSI is a welfare program in addition to being a disability program. Recipients cannot have more than $2,000 in non-exempt assets, nor other significant income. Exempt assets included the basics: a home, a car, clothing and furniture. Significant spousal income can disqualify a disabled person.
Once the non-disability requirements are met Social Security evaluates the Claimant’s medical status. Certain illnesses and injuries qualify for automatic payment under what is called the Listing of Impairments. If the disability does meet or equal a listed impairment, an analysis is performed of the Claimant’s functional status, as well as their age, education and work experience.
Up until 50 years of age a person must be disabled from all jobs, regardless of age, education and work experience. It gets easier to qualify for DIB or SSI once a Claimant reaches 50, and easier still at age 55 and age 60.
There are also special requirements for disabled widows over the age of 50.
Attorney fees are contingent on winning your claim, whether DIB or SSI, and the fee is limited to 25% or $6,000, whichever is less.
If you think you qualify for any of these benefits do not hesitate to call William Crawforth for a free phone consultation.
If you have questions about our Michigan Social Security Disability Attorney and Lawyer Services call us Toll-Free 800-864-1244, local (734) 494-2642 or click here to contact us.