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I'm 35 years of age and only worked 5 or 6 jobs in my whole life. Will I receive ssdi and ssi benefits?

Saint Petersburg, FL |

I have some work history but, I'm not sure how I can be eligable for ssdi when I only worked 5 or 6 jobs in my whole life and all jobs lasted less than a year. The ALJ say I am eligable for ssdi and ssi but, I just want ssi because I will not get any thing over 500.00 on ssdi. How will I have receive the maxium wage for Disability Benefits?

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Attorney answers 3


You can not choose which benefits you take - if you qualify for both, you are required to take the SSDI and then SSI will make up any difference between the SSDI rate and SSI rate. You can not elect to take just the SSI because it is need based, and Social Security is required to pay you the disability benefits and recuce that amount from what your "need" level is for SSI. Plus, as my colleague points out, there are benefits like medicaid and medicare, and refusing part of the benefits from SSDI or SSI could mean you lose eligibility for the medical benefits you might need.

I hope this helps. Best of luck to you.

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Thank you for your time and input. It's was very helpful


It sound like you have already had a hearing. If you have, you will be receiving a written explanation of your benefits. The amount you receive is based on many different considerations: your work history, past wages, present income and assets, etc. Without knowing your individual circumstances, there is no way to "guesstimate" if you will receive the maximum award.

If you have not already had a hearing, and in some instances even if you have had a hearing, you can contact your local social security office and speak with a representative who has access to your wages, work history, etc and he or she can give you an estimated benefit amount.

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Posted "can" qualify for both under certain circumstances. dont limit yourself to only SSI when you may qualify for both. Remember SSI gives you Medicaid, but SSD gives you access to Medicare (after a waiting period). medicare can help you in ways medicaid can not. if you qualify for both, dont assume that you prefer one over another without talking to an atty or a SS rep.

Terri Fay Cromley

Terri Fay Cromley


I agree with this attorney.

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