What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
How do you Win Benefits under Social Security Disability or SSI?
If I am determined disabled, how far back will Social Security pay benefits?
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
How to File for Disability - Tips for Filing
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How much does a Social Security disability attorney get paid?
Social Security Disability SSI Criteria and the Evaluation Process
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
What do you Need to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability SSI and Fibromyalgia
Social Security Disability SSI and Degenerative Disc Disease
Can I Qualify For Disability and Receive Benefits based on Depression?
Answers to questions about SSD and SSI disability
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability Status
Social Security Disability Tips — how a claim gets worked on
Social Security Disability, SSI Disability - Terms, Definitions, Concepts
If I Get Approved For Disability And Later Get Another condition, Can My Benefits Be Increased And Go Up?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
Social Security disability payment amounts are not based upon the severity of a disability beneficiary’s medical or mental condition, the number of conditions they have, or any additional disabling conditions they might have, or later develop. Title 2 (otherwise known as social security disability) benefits are simply calcuated according to how much was paid into the system by the individual as a result of their work activity and the credits that they earned.
Social Security disability payment amounts are determined at the time an individual is approved for disability. If an individual is approved for Social Security disability benefits, their monthly benefit amount is based upon their earnings prior to becoming disabled. If they were young, or had low earnings over the years, or had not worked much prior to becoming disabled, their Social Security disability monthly payment amount is likely to be small with little or no additional money available to pay benefits (dependent benefits) to their children or spouses.
However, if they have had a steady history of work with average or above average earnings prior to becoming disabled, they have a better chance of receiving higher monthly disability payment amounts with additional money available to pay dependents.
If the disability beneficiary is A) receiving SSI (Supplemental Security Income) disability benefits, or B) receiving concurrent SSI and Social Security disability benefits (those with very low Social Security disability benefit amounts can also receive an additional amount of SSI disability benefits, basically to make up for how low their SSD check is), then their total monthly benefit cannot be any higher than whatever the current monthly maximum is for SSI disability. And the maximum monthly SSI amount is determined and set by Congress. The SSI monthly benefit amount cannot increase unless Congress sets a new monthly benefit payment amount.
To address the title of this page and the question with which we begain, there are no increases to Social Security disability or SSI disability monthly benefits on the basis of an additional disabling condition. In rare cases, an individual who receives Social Security disability benefits can receive an increase in their disability monthly benefits if they have performed some work activity since while receiving disability benefits. However, generally, this only occurs if an individual had very few years of earnings, or very low earnings prior to becoming disabled. Remember all work activity should be reported to Social Security to prevent problems such as overpayments or disability benefit suspensions and terminations.
The only other way Social Security disability or SSI disability monthly benefit amounts can be increased is through cost of living adjustments. Cost of living increases are given to adjust for the rate of inflation and are at the discretion of the Federal government.
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Topics and Questions
SSD and SSI are Federal Programs
The title II Social Security Disability and title 16 SSI Disability programs operate under federal guidelines and, therefore, the program requirements--medical and non-medical--apply to all states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Recent approval and denial statistics for various states can be viewed here:
Social Security Disability, SSI Approval and Denial Statistics by state
Special Section: Disability Lawyers and unnecessary claim denials