AM I ELIGIBLE FOR SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY BENEFITS?
Many people think they qualify for disability compensation simply because they have a chronic medical condition. However, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has specific eligibility criteria:
- You cannot perform the job you used to – You will need to provide evidence of how your disability hurts your ability to perform basic work-related activities that you used to be able to perform. Unless your health problem is on the SSA’s list of conditions that automatically qualify for benefits, it will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
- You are unable to do another type of job – You also need to show that your condition and your education, experience and skills leave you unable to perform another type of work.
- Your monthly income does not exceed the limit – You can work and receive Social Security Disability. The SSA will deny your claim if your monthly income is more than $1,170 in 2017.
- Your condition is projected to last one year or cause death – You must have a long-term disability to obtain benefits.
- You have enough work credits – You accumulate work credits throughout your career. In 2017, you must earn $1,300 in wages or self-employment income to get one work credit. The number of work credits you must earn to qualify for disability benefits is based on your age.