Do I Qualify?
Explanation of SSDI Benefits
Understanding SSDI Benefits
Social Security Disability Insurance
Benefits through SSDI are calculated the same way as Social Security retirement benefits. The government bases these benefits on a person’s covered earnings, which relates to the amount of money that person paid in Social Security taxes. This is important, as this government assistance program is exclusively for individuals that have paid into the system over the years.
When calculating SSDI benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) first reviews an applicant’s average monthly earnings throughout the course of their life. This figure is then put into a formula to determine that person’s primary insurance amount—or PIA.
The PIA formula is weighted toward low-income workers. In other words, the less money that a full-time worker makes in their career, the larger percentage of their income they are likely to recover through a successful SSDI claim. However, the amount of monthly income any applicant can recover is capped, and is only adjusted once a year based on inflation.
These monthly payments are designed to provide income for individuals who would normally be working were it not for their disability. For that reason, these benefits will be cut off when a person reaches the age for retirement. From that point forward, an individual could be entitled to retirement benefits through Social Security.
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