It’s natural to want to access all the help available to you. As someone who is unable to work due to a physical condition, your medical bills may increase while your income decreases. Fortunately, you may be eligible for more than one kind of disability benefit. It’s important to understand the requirements of each kind of benefit before applying.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
Some people are eligible to receive SSDI. To do so, you must have a medical condition that the Social Security Administration (SSA) considers a disability and you must have earned enough work credits.
Workers are eligible to earn up to four work credits per year, based on their earnings. The SSA has a sliding scale of requirements so that people with longer work histories are expected to have more work credits than someone who is newer to the workforce.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
To qualify for SSI benefits, you must be:
- Age 65 or older;
- Legally blind; or
- Have limited income and resources;
- A U.S. citizen or qualified alien;
- Reside in the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands.
Like SSDI, applicants must be disabled. However, SSI does not require recipients to have accumulated any work credits. This disability benefit is income-based.
SSDI and SSI are federal disability benefits. California residents may also qualify for a California state disability benefit known as Disability Insurance (DI). Applicants must meet the DI definition of disability.
Combining Programs to Get More Than One of Disability Benefit
While you can get benefits from more than one source, they may work against each other. For example, SSDI benefits or other disability benefits may reduce the amount you receive from other sources, including SSI. Talk to an attorney about your options before assuming you can get more than one kind of disability benefit.
Learn More About Applying for Disability Benefits
Applying for one kind of disability benefit can be frustrating. Trying to meet requirements for more than one benefit program can be a nightmare.
You need someone on your side. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have more than 50 years’ experience with disability claims. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.