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What type of disability benefits are right for you?

The inability to work due to a physical or mental condition can lead to financial difficulties. If you are earning a paycheck, how can you pay for your daily needs or make sure you get all of the medical help you require? It can be a discouraging position to find yourself in, but there could be disability benefits available to you from the Social Security Administration. 

There are two types of disability benefits, Supplemental Security Income and Social Security Disability Insurance. Knowing the difference between these two options is important as you prepare your claim and take the appropriate steps necessary to secure the benefits you need. The difference between these two programs is significant, as they help two distinct groups of people who are unable to work because of a disability.

What is SSDI?

Social Security Disability Income is a program designed to help individuals who are currently unable to work but have a specific type of work history. These benefits come from certain types of taxes collected from employees' paychecks. This mean that, if you have never been able to work or do not have a sufficient work history, you are not eligible for SSDI benefits. 

You must also have a genuine disability, expected to last for at least 12 months or the rest of your life, in order to qualify for these benefits. Your earnings record will determine the amount of SSDI benefits you will receive, and there is a certain waiting period you will have to go through in order for the SSA to determine that your disabling condition legitimately impacts your ability to work. 

What is SSI?

Supplemental Security Income is a government benefits program designed for individuals who do not have the work history to qualify for SSDI benefits. SSI comes from revenue from general taxes collected by the government, so it is not dependent on what you paid into the system. Eligibility depends solely on your needs and finances. To qualify as a single applicant, you must have $2,000 or less in a bank account. 

Know the right choice before you begin

It can be confusing to know which type of benefits you qualify for and how to move forward with the application process. It may help to discuss eligibility requirements and other concerns you have with an experienced Virginia disability attorney. Having knowledgeable guidance can help you avoid problems as you seek the financial support you need.

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Ronald E. Smith, P.C.

criminal defense & Social security disability law

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