Can you file for both SSI and SSD disability benefits?

Applying for SSI and SSD at the same time

You can file for both SSI and SS disability, however you may not be eligible for both disability programs. While you are entitled to file for both, you must meet the non-medical requirements of each program to be eligible to receive benefits.

What are non-medical requirements? Basically, criteria that has nothing to do with your condition, limitations, or medical records. They include your income which is an issue that is applicable to both SSD and SSI as you cannot be working and earning more than SGA in order to be get disability. Non-medical requirements can also include assets, though this only applies to SSI which has an asset (SSA calls this resources) limit of $2000. Lastly, there is the issue of insured status.

For example, Social Security Disability requires that you be insured for disability. Insured status is gained through your earnings over the years prior to you becoming disabled.

Insured status has nothing to do with SSI disability eligibility. SSI is a need based disability program, therefore it has the non-medical requirements that involve income and resource limits.

Once your disability claim has been evaluated for both SSI and SSD, your claim will be sent to a disability agency called DDS for a medical determination. Note: In some states, it may be known as the Bureau of Disability Determination, or the Disability Determination Division.

If you meet the non-medical requirements of both programs, your disability claim is sent as a concurrent claim. If not, it is sent as a SSI or SSD only claim.

Social Security Disability examiners make their medical disability determination for both disability programs simultaneously. Once they make a medical decision on your disability claim, it will be sent back to your local Social Security office for processing. You will receive a letter via the postal service, which explains the determination, the decision, and what the decision was based upon.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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