Many people who are unable to work qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. If you suffer from a condition or injury that prevents you from working, you may be wondering, “How long do I have to be disabled to get SSDI?”
The Easy Answer
Social Security Disability benefits don’t pay out until the 6th full month of disability. There’s a waiting period and it begins the first full month after the Social Security Administration says your disability began.
In addition, Social Security Disability Insurance benefits pay out for disabilities that are
- expected to last for 12 months or longer, or
- expected result in your death in 12 months.
So, is the answer to the question, “How long do I have to be disabled?” going to be 6 months or 12 months?
This is important: If you think your disability may last a year or longer, don’t wait to apply. You should apply for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits as soon as you feel you have become disabled. The application process can be lengthy, and you may end up waiting much longer than 6 months to receive your first check.
Some people make the mistake of waiting 6 months or a year or even longer to apply for benefits. This can be a huge mistake:
- First, if you apply as soon as your disability begins, the Social Security Administration will have access to your most up-to-date medical records.
- Next, if you wait to apply, you will wait to get benefits. Some people miss out on out much-needed benefits because they don’t understand the need to apply early. If you wait 12 months to apply, and the application process takes another 6 months, you will have waited 18 months to receive your first check. Even though you may become eligible for back pay to the date of disability, it’s still not a great situation when you are facing lost income and medical bills.
Get the Benefits You Deserve When You Need Them.
Sometimes you need a lawyer, not a paralegal or advisor. Your case receives the attention and care of experienced Social Security Disability attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller.
For your free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. We are located in Anaheim, but we assist clients throughout Southern California.