Social Security Disability RC

How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long for Disability?, Disability Application
Social Security Disability list of impairments
How to Qualify for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyers FAQ, Disability Back Pay

What is the difference between receiving back pay for SSD and SSI?

I need to file for disability but I am confused about SSI and SSD. Do you get back pay for both, and is there a difference in what you get?

When you contact a local Social Security field office to file a claim for disability (and I would advise this over trying to use the online process since A) you will actually speak with a living person who can answer questions and B) there is no online process for SSI currently and you probably won't be aware of which program you actually qualify for), they will determine which program you can have a claim take.

To answer your basic question, I need to explain how disability applications actually work. When you file for disability--regardless of whether the Social Security office takes a claim for SSD (Social Security Disability) or SSI (Supplemental security income, a disability program for individuals who have not, as a result of work activity, become insured and, thus, eligible for SSD)--the following things occur.

1. You claim that you are disabled currently.

2. You provide a time, or onset date for when your disability began.

3. You provide a list of medical treatment sources so a disability examiner can obtain records from those sources to prove that A) you are currently disabled and B) that your disability began as of a certain point in time.

Now, if you are approved for disability benefits, an EOD, or established onset date will be set. This, as I indicated, is when Social Security believes you became disabled, according to the evidence that they reviewed. This date may or may not agree with the date you provided on your disability application, known as your AOD, or alleged onset date.

How far back will you receive benefits? It depends on whether your claim is for SSI or SSD. If your claim is for SSI, you will receive back pay all the way back to your time of application for SSI, provided the evidence supports this. It could be that your claim, from start to finish, and including appeals, takes two or three years. If so, you could end up receiving two or three years of back pay on your SSI claim.

Now, let me answer this same question for SSD.

How far back will you receive benefits? Potentially, as far back as the medical evidence can prove that your condition (or conditions) was disabling enough, meaning severe enough to satisfy Social Security requirements. If you claim that you became disabled two years before you filed, then you may potentially receive back pay for those two years, provided that your evidence supports this claim. This is, at the risk of sounding redundant, known as back pay.

What is the difference between receiving back pay for SSD and SSI? In both cases, you can end up receiving back pay for literally years of time if your claim has dragged on that long.

But for SSI, now matter how far back you allege that your disability began, your back pay can only accumulate from the time that you actually filed your claim. The clock starts ticking from the date of application. For Social Security Disability, you can potentially receive benefits for 12 retroactive months prior to your actual date of application.

Essential Questions

Can you work on Disability?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

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Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

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Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security disability SSI back pay?

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Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

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What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

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Related pages:

How far back will you receive benefits?
How to Apply for Disability - Where do I go to apply?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Disability benefits?
What happens if my Disability Application is denied?
Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it
What medical conditions can you apply for?
Filing an Application for Disability Benefits
How far back do you get disability benefits in North Carolina?
Can a Disability Examiner or Judge make a Social Security Approval with Old Medical Records?

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

Receiving a Social Security Disability Award Letter
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits?
How do you find out if a Social Security disability claim has been approved or even denied?
Can I Qualify For Disability and Receive Benefits based on Depression?
How much does Social Security Disability or SSI pay?
How does the Social Security Disability Review work?
What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?
More differences between Social Security Disability and SSI

For the sake of clarity, is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.