Tammy and Bruce were like most young families with children. They both worked outside the home just to make ends meet. But one day, Bruce was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Between his symptoms and his treatments, he could no longer work and help support his family. He applied for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, which Social Security awarded to him. Bruce and Tammy both wondered if family SSDI benefits were a thing. More importantly, could they qualify?
Basic Requirements for SSDI Benefits
The first hurdle involves your work history. In fact, several requirements refer to it. You must have worked at a job that was covered by Social Security. Most are, but it is something to check into.
Then, you must have a medical condition that meets the Social Security Administration’s definition of disability. You must meet the following three conditions:
- You can’t continue working at your job because of a medical condition.
- Your medical condition prevents you from transitioning to another type of work.
- Finally, your disability must have lasted a year or is expected to last for at least a year or cause your death.
Going back to the example mentioned above, Bruce had to stop working because of prostate cancer. His medical condition will affect any job he tries to perform, so he meets the first two requirements. As for the third one, there’s medical evidence to support the claim that his disability will last for a year or more or result in his death.
If you pass these tests, you could qualify for monthly SSDI benefits.
But what about your family members?
Available Family SSDI Benefits
When one person starts getting SSDI benefits, it potentially opens the door for their:
- Former spouse,
- Children, and
- Adult children who were disabled before age 22.
Social Security typically asks for information about your family members, including their Social Security numbers and copies of their birth certificates.
Your family SSDI benefits could be up to 50 percent of your own benefit payment. However, Social Security does put a limit on how much your family can receive as a whole. Your family could receive family SSDI benefits ranging from 150 to 180 percent of your own disability benefit.
For example, Tammy and Bruce have two minor children and a 20-year old disabled son. As Bruce’s spouse, Tammy should be entitled to family SSDI benefits. In addition, their two children could receive benefits until age 18 to 19 years old as long as they remain in school and are unmarried. Tammy and Bruce’s adult son was disabled from birth, so he should also qualify for family SSDI benefits.
It’s Complicated, so Give Us a Call About Your Family SSDI Benefits
The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have helped many clients resolve SSDI issues. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.