Social Security Law

Social Security Law

We Understand The Importance Of Your Benefits

Disability is something most people do not like to think about. But the chances that you will become disabled probably are greater than you realize. According to Social Security, studies show that a 20-year-old worker has a 3 in 10 chance of becoming disabled before reaching retirement age.

This website provides basic information on Social Security disability benefits and is not intended to answer all questions. For specific information about your particular situation, you must contact an attorney at the Rockefeller Law Center. Social Security pays disability benefits through two programs: the Social Security Disability Insurance program and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.

Social Security Disability Insurance Program

Social Security pays benefits to people who cannot work (absolutely cannot engage in substantial gainful activity) because they have a medical impmairment that is expected to last at least one year (12 months or longer) or is likely to result in death. Federal law requires this very strict definition of disability. While some programs give money to people with partial disability or short-term disability, Social Security does not.

In general, to get disability benefits, you must meet two different earnings tests:

  • A "recent work" test based on your age at the time you became disabled; and
  • A "duration of work" test to show that you worked long enough under Social Security to be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits.

Certain blind workers have to meet only the "duration of work" test.

Supplement Security Income (SSI)

Who is eligible for SSI? Anyone who is:

  • aged (aged 65 or older)
  • blind or
  • disabled

AND who:

  • has limited income; and
  • has limited resources (income of the entire household is considered)
  • is a U.S. citizen or national or
  • falls in certain categories of alien


We Can Help You With Your Social Security Status

If you have not filed an application with the Social Security office I recommend you do that before you contact an attorney. If you are denied social security and have filed an appeal or needs help filing an appeal I recommend you contact an attorney. If you think you qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, the Rockefeller Law Center can help. Contact us today!

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