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The Social Security Administration (SSA) has two types of disability benefits to offer: Social Security Disability (SSD) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Both programs act to supplement the income of anyone who isn’t able to work due to a medical disability, such as deafness. SSI and SSD work to serve two different groups.

The biggest difference between SSI and SSD is who qualifies. SSD is available to those who have paid into the system through their taxes over the years. SSI, however, is more of a safety net for anyone who doesn’t qualify for SSD and has a low income. To break it down, SSD is for people who used to work but had to stop because of a mental or physical disability, while SSI helps out low-income people who haven’t worked enough to earn the credits necessary to qualify for SSD. The most effective way to navigate the world of benefits is to speak with a Social Security lawyer.

Who Is SSD For?

SSD is funded by the revenue from payroll taxes being paid by everyone from employers, to workers, and even the self-employed. In a way, SSD works like a retirement benefit whereas only the people who have earned a specific amount of credits through payment of payroll tax contributions are eligible. You’ll also need a doctor’s statement that your physical or mental disability is expected to last a minimum of one year or until death. SSD benefits are also for disabled or blind workers, as well as their children, surviving spouses, and adults who have been disabled since childhood. In terms of the amount of SSD you might be eligible to receive, it ultimately depends on how much you paid into the system. The higher your salary is, the higher your monthly benefits will be. The best way to figure out if you’re eligible for SSD is to consult with an Alabama Social Security lawyer to review your situation.

Who Is SSI For?

SSI is funded by the revenue from general taxes. Whereas SSD benefits are based on a recipient’s prior work history, SSI is not. Therefore, anyone who didn’t earn enough income to be eligible for SSD may be eligible for SSI. For the most part, SSI benefits are for people over 65, children who are blind or disabled, or adults who are blind or disabled. SSI benefit amounts are based on a combination of the recipient’s income, resources, and needs, up to the maximum federal rate. There are also certain states that are willing to supplement SSI benefits with a monthly sum based on the recipient’s needs. If you’re curious about what the SSI benefits look like in your state, contact an experienced Social Security attorney for a free consultation.

Should I Apply for SSI or SSD Benefits?

Navigating the Social Security Administration can often be more complex than any other form of federal benefits. Just figuring out which form of Social Security benefits you qualify for can be a difficult process. If you’re unsure if you should apply for SSI or SSD, the best thing you can do is speak to a Social Security benefits attorney. Call Walton Law LLC at 251-455-5819 today.