Author: Jay Kennamer, Esq., McMahan Law Firm
Back disability pay can be very confusing because there are several different dates that must be considered to determine if you are entitled to backpay. In addition, some applicants may be entitled to retroactive pay in addition to backpay. To complicate matters further, backpay is handled differently depending on the type of SSD benefits you are receiving. An Indiana disability lawyer can be very helpful when you are dealing with SSD backpay.
Backpay For Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Benefits
The date of the application is considered to be the date of disability for SSI recipients, even if the actual date of disability is before the application. SSI applicants who are approved for disability payments are entitled to receive payments beginning on the first full month after the date of the application. Therefore, you can only receive backpay from the date of your application through the date you were approved for SSI benefits.
If you are entitled to a small amount of backpay for SSI benefits, you will receive the amount in a lump sum payment. However, for large amounts, the backpay is divided into three payments and paid six months apart.
Backpay for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) Benefits
Backpay disability payments for SSDI are handled slightly different from the backpay for SSI benefits. First, SSDI recipients are only entitled to receive benefits after a five-month waiting period. The five-month waiting period begins running from the established onset date (EOD) set by the SSA.
When you file an application for SSDI benefits, you state when your disability began. The examiner will set your EOD based on your medical records and work history, not necessarily the date you put on your application. Therefore, your disability benefits will begin on the sixth month after your EOD. Any backpay will be calculated beginning after the five-month waiting period through the date you are approved for SSDI benefits. You receive this payment in one lump sum amount.
SSDI recipients may also be entitled to receive retroactive payments. If the SSA determines that your disability begins before your application date, it may set the EOD for some time before the application. If this is the case, you may receive retroactive payments from the EOD through the date of the application, minus the five-month waiting period. This amount is also paid in a lump sum payment. However, you may not receive more than 12 months of retroactive pay.
Setting the Established Onset Date Is Very Important
As you can see, your backpay will be greatly influenced by the EOD set by the SSA disability examiner or an administrative judge, if you appeal a denial and a judge hears your case. Ensuring that you receive the earliest EOD possible increases the amount you receive as backpay for disability payments by increasing the number of months between the EOD and your approval. It is very important to seek the advice of an experienced Indiana disability lawyer to get advice about applying for Social Security disability benefits.
Call a Disability Lawyer for More Information
If you need assistance with filing for disability benefits, contact The Ken Nunn Law Office by calling 1-800-CALL-KEN or 1-800-225-5536 to request a free consultation with a disability lawyer. You can also contact our office 24/7 by using the Live Chat feature on our website.
About The Author
Jay Kennamer is a Social Security disability lawyer in Chattanooga, Tennessee and a leading attorney at the McMahan Law Firm. Jay is a graduate of the Samford University Cumberland School of Law and is also a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.