Lump sums in the Social Security Administration

Asked over 1 year ago - Lindenhurst, NY

I filed for disability I'm in the process of appealing the disability. I was given a partial decision by a ALJ.

I'm collecting SSI right now. I'm owed $6,000 something in retro from the SSI.
They say they have to pay it in payments /installments every 6 months. Why is that?

Is there any way to get in a lump sum?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Gaetano Parrinello

    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I agree with my colleague, Mr. Ortiz. My experience has been that most claimants who went all the way to hearing and are granted ssd benefits, then found eligible for ssi as well, are owed so much money because of the time that has passed that the back payments are spread out over time in accordance with applicable law. Unfortunately, unless you meet the criteria set forth by Mr. Ortiz, you will have to wait for payment over time. Good luck.

    The author of this posting is licensed to practice law in the State of New York. This posting is intended as... more
  2. Nick Anthony Ortiz

    Contributor Level 9


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . After winning their SSI disability claims, many claimants are shocked to learn that Social Security is not paying out the entire back due benefit in one lump sum. In many claims with large past-due benefits, the claimant only receives $2,000.00 in back pay upon a win, $2,000.00 six months later, and the remaining past-due balance another six months later.

    Claimants will tell me, “But that’s my money. They’ve admitted that I’m owed the money. I want it all at once. I don’t want it broken up into three payments over the course of a year.”

    However, Social Security is permitted to and in fact is required to issue large past-due benefits in the three installments, six months apart. But you should know that there are some limited exceptions to this general rule. It is possible to receive all of the back pay at once, or a larger installment payment.

    Social Security may pay all of the back pay in one lump sum to a claimant who:

    is terminally ill and is not expected to live longer than 12 months; or
    is not currently eligible for SSI and is likely to remain ineligible for 12 more months.

    Moreover, Social Security may make a larger installment payment to a claimant who has debts or expenses that are not eligible to be paid by anyone else. Social Security may possibly increase your payment by the amount of current outstanding debts you may have related to food, clothing, shelter, medicine or medically necessary services, supplies or equipment, or the purchase of a home. You should present such obligations to your local Social Security office and they may release more than the $2,000.00 initial and interim installment payments.

    This comment is published by and reflects the personal views of Nick Ortiz, in his individual capacity. It does... more
  3. Clifford Michael Farrell

    Contributor Level 19

    Answered . My colleagues are correct. The short answer is that except for a few limited circumstances they will notelease the money early.

    You said you got a partially favorable decision from the ALJ. Did you have an attorney? If so, did they explain that on appeal the Appeals Council could deny your claim, could send it bacjk for a new hearing, or could decide to take away what the ALJ awarded? If you did not have an attorney, you may want to sit down with an attorney to discuss this in more detail. The Appeals Coucil currently denies about 80% of all claims, and has been more aggressive about accepting appeals, opening up the whole claim and sending everything back for a new decision. There are risks involved and you should talk to an attorney about those risks.

    Best of luck to you!

    The exact answers to questions like this require more information than presented. The answer(s) provided should... more

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