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Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

What is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)?

SSDI is a federal program that gives monthly cash benefits to people who have worked, paid Social Security taxes, and now have disabilities that prevent them from working.

Who is eligible for SSDI?

  • Disabled: Social Security Administration must decide that you are disabled.
  • Have worked a certain amount of time and have contributed enough in Social Security taxes.
  • You can apply to most nationwide waiting lists, regardless of where you currently live.

How do I know if my disability qualifies me for SSDI?

Your disabling condition must be on Social Security"s List of Impairments for you to qualify. If your disability is not on the list, Social Security has to decide that your condition is as severe as a condition that is on the list for you to qualify.

How is my SSDI benefit calculated?

Your SSDI benefits amount is based on your average earnings from work over your lifetime. Small changes will be made to your benefits amount each year to account for changes in the cost of living.

How to apply for SSDI benefits:

  • Apply online (which starts the application process immediately instead of having to wait for an appointment)
  • By calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 or 1-800-325-0778 (TTY) to make an appointment to apply either:
    • Over the phone
    • In person at your local Social Security office