Social Security Disability Resource Center

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Requirements | How long it takes | Back Pay
Mental Disability | What is a disability? | Tips
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Hearings | Appeals | List of Disabling Conditions

Is it too late for file for last year's disability benefits, or retroactive benefits?

I read about retroactive benefits on your website but I am not sure if it answers my question regarding disability from last year. I was on STD from May until August 5 last year & just found out I could have qualified & filed for SSDI. Is it too late to apply for last year's benefits?

No, it is not "necessarily" too late to apply for last year's benefits as you put it. But it depends on which program your disability claim is taken in. For SSI, the answer is no. SSI does not have retroactive benefits and you can only receive back pay from the time you filed your application. The clock starts ticking from the date of an SSI application.

So, it is always good, if you believe you are disabled, to get the claim filed as soon as possible. Ultimately, how much back pay you can receive will depend on how long it takes to get approved, which will often involve a disability application and one or more appeals.

If your disability application is filed under SSD, or Social Security Disability, you can actually get back pay benefits for 12 retroactive months prior to the date of your SSD application. Five of those months will be wiped out by something known as the five month waiting period, of course. But at least, in the case of an application for SSD, you can actually get disability benefits for a time before you actually filed, i.e. retroactive benefits and, as you put it "last year's benefits".

Mind you, this is all contingent on filing and getting approved for SSD versus SSI, and having your medical evidence actually establish that you meet the requirements of disability for title II Social Security Disability.

  • What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

  • What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

  • Which conditions will social security recognize as a disability?

  • Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

  • SSDRC Homepage:

    Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center

    The Most Basic questions about Getting Disability Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI and whether or not you can work

    Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

    Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    More Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    Common Questions about Social Security Disability and SSI

    Winning Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    The SSI Disability Benefits Program

    Medical exams for disability claims

    Applying for Disability in various states

    Social Security Disability SSI and Doctors - Yours and Theirs

    Social Security Disability and SSI Claim Reviews

    Social Security Disability SSI System and Benefits for Children

    Denials, Appeals, and Getting a Disability Lawyer or Representative

    What you should know about Social Security Disability and SSI Denials

    Questions about Disability Lawyers and Hiring a Disability Attorney

    Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits

    FAQ on Disability Claim Representation

    Disability hearings before Judges

    Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers

    Various Types of Benefits including SSI, Mental, and Child benefits

    Social Security and SSI based on Mental Disability

    Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits for Children

    Disability Benefits through Social Security

    Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI: Medical Evidence and Records

    Filing your claim for disability benefits

    Eligibility for receiving disability benefits

    Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved

    FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions

    The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration

    Resources on this site

    Social Security Disability, SSI Terms and Definitions

    Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

    For Individuals living in North Carolina

    Applying for Disability in North Carolina

    North Carolina Disability Lawyer

    Related pages:

    Does Social Security Hold Back The First five Months Of Back Pay?
    What is Social Security Disability Back Pay?
    What is the maximum back pay you can get for Social Security disability?
    Do you always get disability back payments from social security?
    Are there retroactive Social Security Benefits payable when reduced early retirement is taken at 62?
    Can I get Retroactive SSI Disability Benefits?
    What is the regulation for SSDI Retroactive Benefits?
    Social Security Disability SSI - Retroactive Benefits Vs Back Pay Benefits
    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