Understanding SSDI 2017-11-02T18:55:15+00:00

Understanding SSDI

Better understanding of SSDI enhances your pursuit of a healthier, more financially secure life.

Applying for Social Security Disability Insurance is a personal decision, and although thousands of people complete the process each year, it’s different for everyone. Work history, education, and mental or physical conditions can all impact the SSDI process and its outcome. The information here will give you a clear understanding of what SSDI is, explain how it works, and help you know what to expect as you apply for benefits, navigate return to work, and more.

SSDI Overview

SSDI provides monthly income to those who can’t work due to a disability. According to the SSA, studies show that a 20-year-old worker has a 1 in 4 chance of becoming disabled before reaching retirement age.

Learn More About SSDI

Monthly SSDI Payment Calculator

Wondering how much your SSDI benefit payments could be each month? Use our online calculator to get a helpful estimate, based on your age and average annual earnings from work. It’s quick, simple, and will help you prepare for what comes next.

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8 SSDI Benefits
Beyond Monthly Income

Approval for SSDI unlocks access to money-saving, life-enhancing benefits beyond regular monthly income.

Medicare Coverage

You’re eligible for this medical, hospital and prescription coverage 24 months after your SSDI benefits begin.

COBRA Extension

The length of your COBRA benefits could be extended an additional 11 months.

LTD Security

If you have private long-term disability (LTD) insurance, it probably requires you to apply for SSDI. Doing this can protect LTD benefits.

Retirement Benefits

Approval for SSDI triggers a Social Security earnings record freeze that can result in a higher retirement income.

Dependent Benefits

SSDI approval can activate benefits for your children under the age of 18, adding up to 50% more income to your monthly payments.

Cost-of-Living Adjustment

The SSA evaluates cost of living allowances annually, which could increase your monthly payment.

Tax Relief

You may not have to pay income taxes on a portion of the SSDI benefit payments you get each month.

Return to Work

There are incentives if you return to work: free help from a certified Employment Network, protection for SSDI income, and more.

Your Guide To The SSDI Process

The SSDI Approval Process

You may experience 5 levels within the Social Security Administration’s process for SSDI benefits.

Learn More About Levels 1-5

Appeals Assistance

Already applied or been denied? We’re here for you. Get True Help wherever you are in the process.

More About Appeals Representation

Preparing For A Hearing

Appearing before a judge in a hearing is less intimidating if you know what to expect during this process.

Things to Know

Taxes, Creditors & SSDI Income

Monthly SSDI payments aren’t always taxed, and they might also be protected from creditors. Familiarize yourself with some of the rules that can help protect your monthly SSDI income, so you’re able to keep more of it for day-to-day living expenses.

Learn About Protecting SSDI

SSDI Guidelines By Disability

The Social Security Administration has general guidelines for SSDI, but the approval process isn’t the same for all disabilities. Plus, some conditions qualify for Compassionate Allowances and a quicker decision. Our listing of SSDI guidelines by disability will tell you what to expect.

Go to Disability Guidelines

How Are SSDI & SSI Different?

Eligibility requirements make SSDI and SSI quite different. It’s confusing that these two separate programs have similar initials, because they both provide income for people with disabilities, and are both run by the SSA.

SSDI is Social Security Disability Insurance

This program is for adults with disabilities who are no longer able to work. To be eligible for benefits, you have to meet certain work history requirements and be able to prove that your condition prevents you from work.

SSI is Supplemental Security Income

This program has nothing to do with work history. It’s based on financial need, and provides benefits for both children and adults with disabilities. To be eligible, you must have less than $2,000 in assets and very little to no income.

Some people are eligible for SSDI & SSI

You may be eligible for both SSDI and SSI benefits if you have a work history that qualifies you for SSDI, and a limited income that meets requirements for SSI. We can help improve your chances of approval for these benefits.

Have Long-Term Disability (LTD) Benefits?

With True Help, We Can Better Protect Your LTD Income

Many LTD insurance company policies require that you seek SSDI if it’s likely you will also meet the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) definition of disabled. Following the terms of your policy and applying for SSDI is one important way you can protect your LTD income.

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Ready for True Help with SSDI?

empower is a personalized online tool that guides you through the SSDI application process and can help you use these benefits to return to work, if and when you medically recover. Get started by taking our free SSDI Assessment to determine your likelihood of qualifying.

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