Can you draw Social Security Disability on a spouse's Social Security earnings record?

Question 1: How can I be denied at 37 for not paying in enough Social Security when the mental disorders I have including Anxiety, OCD, ADHD and my most menacing one bipolar has impaired me in my ability to gain and maintain steady employment since before my 20's? I worked as much as my combined disorders allowed me to.

Question 2: I was married for the last 14 years. Can I draw SS disability on his social security earnings?

There is no way around it, Social Security Disability depends upon an insured status that is earned through work activity. If you have not worked enough, you are not insured not matter what your disabling condition. You can file for SSI disability, if you do not have too much income or resources. SSI is based upon need rather than insured status.

Unfortunately, you will not be able to draw on your ex-spouse's record until you are age 62, unless he passes away. If he passes away, you can potentially receive divorced disabled widow's benefits at age 50-60, provided you do not remarry until after the age of 50. Or you can receive as a widow at age 60 if you have not remarried.

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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