Your Previous Job And How It Affects Your SSDI Benefits

Posted on: 28 September 2021


Those that cannot work at their jobs anymore may want to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Unlike the other form of government assistance, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), SSDI is based on your work history. To find out how your previous job can affect the way your SSDI claim is handled, read below.

Understanding FICA Deductions

Each time you are paid, a portion of that pay is withheld under the name of FICA (Federal Insurance Contributions Act) and kept in a fund for you. If you become disabled, you may be eligible to withdraw from that fund.

Gaps in Coverage

Some people leave work because of a medical or mental problem and then they don't file for benefits in a timely manner. As long as the time you wait before filing is not too lengthy, it won't affect your ability to draw SSDI benefits. However, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will be focusing on the previous 10 years of work history. If you did not work during at least five of those years, you may not qualify for benefits. For this restriction, be certain that you are counting back from the day you submit your application and not the last day you worked.

The Last Day You Worked

Speaking of the last day of work, that date is also important to the SSA. As mentioned above, your FICA contributions are used to determine your SSDI eligibility and the amount you can be paid each month once you are approved. Once you stop work, however, no further contributions are made to the plan. That day, known as the date of last insurance (DLI), is used to find out how recent your work history was, your income and contributions, and more.

Exceptions to Understand

If you don't have enough recent work history to qualify for SSDI benefits, you may fall into a group that deserves special attention. Those people include the blind and applicants that are younger and have not had to opportunity to work for at least ten years. Also, some people are unable to file because of their condition and may qualify for protected status in regard to time constraints. Finally, those who cannot file for SSDI because of work history issues may be able to gain benefits by filing for SSI.

If you have been turned down for benefits, no matter what the reason, there is help available. Speak to a Social Security lawyer about your SSDI case and find out how you can win benefits at your appeal hearing.