What do you need to know about SSDI?

On Behalf of | Jan 17, 2022 | Social Security Disability

You may have heard of SSI (Supplemental Security Income) and SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) as possible disability benefits in New Jersey. SSDI is for workers who have worked a long time and paid Social Security taxes. Their time working needs to be recent too. SSI is an option for people who don’t meet the SSDI work length and recency requirements.

Work requirements

The SSA (Social Security Administration) converts your work history into work credits to determine eligibility. Your age also influences how many work credits you need. The older you are, the more work credits you need. Those who are 50 years old need 28 credits, which equates to around seven years of work. If you are under 24, you could qualify for SSDI with 1.5 years of employment history. The SSA typically looks at the last 10 years of employment for credits to ensure recency.

Blue Book

Check the Blue Book with your doctor to see if you meet the medical requirements for SSDI. If you don’t qualify and you’re unable to work because of your medical condition, you could ask your doctor to fill out a residual functional capacity (RFC) form. The form will outline how long you can stand and sit, how much you can lift and your ability to remember and complete tasks.

Inability to work

You must prove that you’re unable to work because of your medical condition. One of the requirements for SSDI is at least 12 months of unemployment due to your medical condition or a doctor’s assessment that you can’t work for at least 12 months because of the health issue.

The SSA asks for a lot of documents and details when you apply for SSDI to determine if you’re eligible. Going over the Blue Book with your doctor will give you better clarity on your eligibility, but it’s still possible to qualify with a doctor’s recommendation as long as you’re unable to work for at least 12 months.