What program to file for SSI or SSDI?

by | Aug 4, 2015 | Lawyers

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While applying for financial assistance for medical and health problems, things can get confusing when it comes to determining what you qualify for and what you need to actually apply for. The two main programs that applicants tend to be unclear about are SSI (Supplemental Security Income) and SSDI (Social Security Disability Income). Seeking out a New Jersey disability attorney is the best way to ensure you fully understand both programs and are applying for the right type of assistance. Here are the top differences between SSI and SSDI.

1. Work hours
This is the major differentiating factor between SSI and SSDI. When it comes to SSDI, applicants are required to have a certain amount of work experience in order to qualify for and obtain it. This is not to say the quality of the positions you held are a contributing factor, but more so the amount of time you put into the work force as a whole. On the other hand, with SSI, those who haven’t been working for too long or long enough are open to apply. Not to mention, SSI is opportune for those with a low income and zero work experience.

2. Age
Disability is often seen as an elderly situation. Many do not think of children and those under 50 as people who deal with finding assistance for their medical needs. This in part may possibly be due to the requirement that applicants for SSDI be under 65, but have a certain number of work hours. In order to meet that quota, one must be in the neighborhood of a certain age group leaning towards the elderly. For the rest of the disabled individuals who do not qualify for the age requirements of SSDI, SSI is the proper financial assistance they need to apply for.

3. Waiting period
Health problems can be very urging. Financial assistance can be what stands between a disabled individual and the medical help they need. Luckily for those who apply for SSI, benefits begin to kick in as soon as the first of the month that they submit their application. Unfortunately for those who apply for SSDI, there is a five-month waiting period. Even so, once the benefits do begin to kick in, the spouse and dependent children of the disabled person will receive some benefits, as well.