Can I Get Disability in Texas if I Have Not Worked Before?

Social Security administers two disability programs - Supplemental Security Income disability and Social Security Disability. Social Security Disability is based upon insured status that is gained through work activity and if you have not worked then you would not be eligible to receive Social Security Disability. So what can you do if you have not worked but find yourself disabled?

Your only chance of receiving disability in Texas in this case would be through the Supplemental Security Income disability program. This disability program is based upon financial need rather than your work history. However, SSI has it's own non-disability criteria that must be met prior to an individual receiving disability benefits.

Supplemental Security Income disability program has limits on the resources you may own (cars, your house, land, bank accounts, retirement plans, stocks, 401K programs etc) and income (earnings, long term disability benefits, veteran's benefits, short term disability, etc).

The limit for resources for an individual is 2000.00 (extra vehicles, land, bank accounts, etc, to name a few) or 3000.00 for a couple. If your "countable" resources are over the limit, you would not qualify for this program either. However, do not make any assumption regarding countable resources. Leave that to the social security field office claims rep to determine what they are.

Additional Information

Income limits for disability program eligibility go up each year; therefore, you may wish to contact Social Security to find out what the current limits are should you wish to pursue a disability claim with Social Security.

For SSI cases, Social Security does count your spouse's income (it is deemed) as well as their resources if they are living in your household. So even if your personal resources and income are not over the limit, your spouse's income or resources may potentially make you ineligible.

If you meet the income and resource limits of the SSI disability program, your disability claim will be sent to the Texas state disability agency for a medical determination. All Social Security Disability medical determinations are done the same way whether you are filing for Social Security Disability, Supplemental Security Income disability, or both.

If you are found medically disabled by Social Security, your SSI disability case will be returned to your local Social Security office for an end of the line review. Once again, a Social Security claims representative, or CR, will review your income and resources to make sure you still meet the limits. If you do not meet the limits, your claim will be denied---even if you were found to be medically disabled by Social Security by a disability examiner.

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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These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

What to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits
Applying for disability benefits, SSI and SSDI
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability?
How does back pay for Social Security Disability work?
Social Security Disability And SSI Qualifications
Permanent Disability Qualifications for SSD and SSI
Status of your Social Security Disability or SSI case
Disability lawyer representation, finding lawyers
What is qualifying for disability based on?
How to qualify for disability, qualifying for Benefits
Qualifications for Disability Benefits
How long does it take to get disability after applying?
Disability application, how to file in Texas
Texas disability requirements
Eligibility and qualifying for disability in Texas
What are the qualifications for disability in Texas?
Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in Texas?
Getting a Texas disability lawyer, attorney, or advocate