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Rules for Social Security Disability

5/22/06

You must meet certain rules for qualify for Social Security Disability benefits:


For Disabled Worker's Benefits:

You must have the required work credits and your health Problems must:

- keep you from doing any kind of substantial work (described below), and
- last, or be expected to last, for at least 12 months in a row, or result in death.


For Disabled Child's Benefits:

You must be age 18 or older and your health problems must:

- have started before age 22 or you must have become disabled again within 7 years after the month that your earlier period of disability ended, and
- keep you from doing any kind of substantial gainful work, (described below), and
- last, or be expected to last, for at least 12 months in a row, or result in death.


For Disabled Widow(er)'s or Surviving Divorced Spouse Benefits

You must be at least age 50, and your health problems must:

- Keep you from doing any kind of substantial gainful work: (described below), and
- last, or be expected to last, for at least 12 months in a row, or result in death, and
- have started before the end of a special period. The special period starts with the latest of:
the month your spouse died, or
the month your Social Security benefits as a parent ended, or
the month your earlier period of widow(er)'s disability ended.

The special period ends at the close of the 84th month (7 years) after the month it started.


Rules for SSI Disability and Blindness

You must meet certain rules to qualify for SSI payments based on disability:

For payment as a Disabled Adult:

If you are age 18 or older your health problems must:
- keep you from doing any kind of substantial gainful work (described below), and
- last, or be expected to last, for at least 12 months in a row, or result in death.


For payment as a Disabled Child finder Age 18:

A New Definition of Disability for Children:

- We will consider a child disabled only if his or her condition meets the definition of disability for children. This definition of disability:

- requires a child to have a physical or mental condition or conditions that can be medically proven and which results in marked and severe functional limitations
- requires that the medically proven physical or mental condition or conditions must last at least 12 months or be expected to result in death; and

- says that. a child may not be considered disabled if he or she is working at a job that we consider to be substantial work:

The new law also changes the way we consider certain behavior problems caused by a child's condition or conditions.

You must meet certain rules to qualify for SSI Payments based on blindness:

- your eyesight must be no better than 20/200 in the better eye with the use of a correcting lens, or

- your visual fields must be restricted to 20 degrees or less.


You can qualify for SSI benefits due to blindness even if you can do substantial work.


Information About Substantial Work

Generally, substantial work is physical or mental work a person is paid to do. Work can be substantial even if it is part-time. To decide if a person's work is substantial, we consider the nature of the job duties, the skills and experience needed to do the job and how much the person actually earns.

Usually, we find that work is substantial if gross earnings average over $500 per month after we deduct allowable amounts. A person's work: may be different than before his/her health problems began. It may not be as hard to do and the pay may be less. However, we may still find that the work is substantial under our rules.

If a person is self employed, we consider the kind and value of his/her work, including his/her part in the management of the business, as well as income, to decide if the work is substantial.

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