Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, is a federal insurance program that provides income for disable applicants that are not able to work due to their disability. The SSDI program was created by the United States government under the Social Security Act of 1965 and is often referred to as Disability Insurance benefits or Title II benefits.
Applicants may qualify for SSDI benefits if they suffer from a condition, physical or mental, that inhibits the applicant from maintaining gainful employment. Other qualifications evaluate how long the applicant has worked, how long they have suffered from their condition, if they are younger than 65, and how long the condition will persist.
Depending on the applicants age, they must have worked a certain number of years to be eligible for SSDI benefits. For example, if the applicant is under the age of 28, they must have worked steadily for a minimum of 1.5 years. An applicant that is 60 years old must have worked for a minimum of 9.5 years.
If the applicant has had the condition prior to turning 22, he or she does not have to meet length of work requirements. If the condition is anticipated to persist for at least year or longer or cause the applicant’s death, the applicant may also qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance.
After the application for benefits has been received, the Social Security Administration (SSA) review the application to ensure it meets the minimum criteria. After that, the applicant is screened by the office of Disability Determination Services in that applicant’s state. This office interviews the applicant’s doctors, reviews the applicant’s treatments and prior medical history, and reviews the results of any medical tests performed regarding the applicant’s medical condition.
The office of Disability Determination Services also reviews the applicant’s work habits including job requirements and activities to determine if the condition does in fact impede the applicant’s ability to work. As the SSA notes on their website regarding Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, they administer a five-step process to determine if you are disabled.
The process pertains to these five criteria:
Severity of medical condition
Qualification based on the applicant’s state’s List of Impairments
Ability to perform prior work activities
Ability to perform tasks in another capacity or different employment
The Social Security Disability Insurance program has special provisions for the blind.
The wait time for a decision for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, whether acceptance or denial, has increased annually. This is caused by a backlog of applicants, an increase of applicants seeking benefits.
The top ten states with the most extensive wait time for a decision regarding SSDI benefits are Alabama (AL), the District of Columbia (D.C.), Illinois (IL), Indiana (IN), Michigan (MI), Minnesota (MN), Missouri (MO), Nebraska (NE), Ohio (OH), and Wisconsin (WI).