Social Security covers more than retirees. Can you use it?
Social Security isn’t only for retirees. Lots of other people benefits for it as well. Almost 13.5 million Americans under 65 receive its paycheck every month. While some of these are seniors who want to start their benefits soon after they become eligible, lots of them aren’t even close to retirement age. However, they still qualify for Social Security benefits for one of the lesser-known reasons. You may be eligible for social security as well without your knowledge.
What are social security disability benefits?
Social Security pays benefits to those people who are unable to work due to a disability if it could potentially last at least one year or until death. However, you must have earned a certain number of credits to qualify for these benefits. With current definition, a single credit is $1,410 in earnings in 2020. Furthermore, you can earn up to four credits per year. How many credits do you need to qualify for disability benefits? It depends on your age at the time of disability. However, it won’t be more than 40 credits.
If you think that you qualify for disability benefits, you can apply at your local Social Security office or online. Still, you won’t start receiving checks right away. Usually, it takes three to five months to process a Social Security disability application. At first, the Social Security Administration has to verify your work history and medical records. After that, they decide whether your condition is severe enough to warrant disability benefits.
The Social Security Administration will notify you once it’s made its decision. You may also appeal if it denies your application. Your denial notice will contain information on how to do that. On the other hand, if you’re approved for disability benefits, your notice will inform you how much you’ll receive per month.
Furthermore, family members of disabled workers, among them spouses and unmarried children under 18, or any age if disabled before 22, could also qualify for Social Security benefits only if they counted upon the disabled worker’s income.
What are Social Security survivors’ benefits?
Survivors benefits, on the other hand, go to the spouses, minor children, or sometimes ex-spouses and dependent parents of deceased workers. The worker must’ve earned enough credits to qualify for benefits. However, how many credits they need depends upon their age at death.
Surviving spouses usually may claim benefits at 60, or 50 if they’re disabled. It’s the same for ex-spouses if they haven’t remarried and were married to the deceased worker for at least ten years. Furthermore, spouses and ex-spouses caring for the deceased worker’s disabled children or children under 16 are eligible for benefits at any age, regardless of the length of their marriage.
Unmarried children under 18 or up to 19, if they are still in high school, can also claim survivors benefits as well as adult children who were disabled before 22. Stepchildren adopted children, grandchildren or stepgrandchildren can be eligible for benefits as well in certain circumstances.
The amount eligible person receives in survivors benefits depends on his/her relationship to the deceased, the deceased’s work history and your age. Spouses and ex-spouses could qualify for up to 100% of the deceased worker’s Social Security benefit. However, children receive 75% of the worker’s benefit amount.
What about children’s benefits?
If their parent is disabled or deceased, children may also qualify for Social Security benefits. They may also be eligible if their parent is 62 or older and can claim Social Security benefits based on their work history.
In order to do so, children must be unmarried and under 18, or up to 19 if they are still in high school. However, they can be any age if they were disabled before 22. Stepchildren, adopted children, and grandchildren also may be eligible for benefits in certain circumstances.
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