Benefits for Those Who Can No Longer Work
If an illness or injury keeps you from working, it is important to know what benefits you are entitled to. Social Security Disability benefits are available to those who meet the program’s requirements, and can help those who are unable to earn wages.
There are two types of requirements for SSD benefits: technical and medical. Technical requirements include having worked and paid into Social Security via FICA taxes in your recent work history. The amount of work required depends on your age. The Social Security Administration tracks the number of credits you have, as well as if and when they expire.
A credit or quarter is a period of work determined by the Social Security Administration. A worker can earn no more than 4 credits/quarters in a year. Younger workers need fewer credits than older workers to qualify for SSD. Those under 24 need 6 quarters (or about 1.5 years of work) in the last 3 years. Those aged 24-30 have to have worked half the time between age 21 and the time they became disabled.
For those 31 or older, at least 20 credits are required in the 10 years prior to becoming disabled in order to be eligible for benefits. For help determining your eligibility based on work credit, you can contact the Social Security Administration at (412) 661-1400 or call your local Social Security Office.
Residual Functional Capacity
Many types of conditions, injuries, and illnesses meet the medical requirements for SSD. Most importantly, your doctor’s diagnosis must indicate that you are currently unable to work and that you will continue to be unable to work for at least 12 months. Social Security looks at your “residual functional capacity” – what you are able to do and not do in your current condition.
The attorneys at Berger and Green can assist you in deciding whether you meet the medical and technical requirements for SSD. Call or contact us online for a free consultation today.
Free case evaluations • NO attorneys’ fees or costs unless we recover a settlement, benefits, or verdict in your case • We can initiate your case by phone or e-mail – CALL today (412) 661-1400 or Contact us online