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Disability insurance provided by Social Security breaks down into two programs. First, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). To qualify you must have paid Social Security through payroll deductions. Disability payment is determined by the total of your SS deductions.

Second, Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This program is designed for those unable to work or have not met the payroll deductions required by SSID. However, the benefits are still determined, in part, by your and your spouse’s income along with any financial investment you have.

Age isn’t a factor and the benefits are determined by your the severity of your disability. If you ever have to apply for either program the odds are that you will be turned away. Do not be discouraged and be sure to reapply. Again, you are likely to be turned down. When you finally reach the hearing stage your chances actually improve. Hopefully if you have gotten to the hearing stage you have sought out a good disability attorney. In fact Disability Happens recommends that you seek out an attorney before you even apply. You really want an advocate by your side to guide you through the Social Security Disability maze.

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  • In addition to age and medical condition, I have found that a claimant’s work history is a very important factor, at least when the case gets to an Administrative Law Judge. Judges are much more likely to approve a case that does not have overwhelming medical evidence if there is a 20 year work history.