Title II Social Security Disability Cases (SSD/DIB) – In order to qualify for Title II you must be disabled as outlined above under “What is Disability”, and you need, in general, 40 credits, 20 of which were earned in the last 10 years ending with the year you became disabled.  We use the word “general” because, like everything in life, there are always exception.  For example, younger workers may qualify with fewer credits.  In 2013, you earn one (1) credit for every $1,160 of earnings.  When you have reached $4,640, you have earned 4 credits.

Title XVI – Supplemental Security Income Cases (SSI) – If you are disabled (your disability having lasted or expected to last at least 12 months), but you have not paid in enough credits into Social Security to qualify for Title II (Social Security Disability), you may be eligible for Social Security Income (SSI).  The eligibility for SSI benefits is not solely based on your disability, but is also based on your available income and resources.

Disabled Widows Benefits (DWB) – If you are a disabled widow(er) of a deceased worker, and you are disabled under the Social Security Administration’s requirements, you may be eligible for disabled widow(er)’s benefits.  You must be at least 50 years of age, must have started before age 60 and within seven (7) years of the following dates:

1) the month the worker died; or 2) the last month you were entitled to mother’s or father’s benefits on the worker’s record; or 3) the month your previous entitlement to disabled widow or widower’s benefits ended because your disability ended (ssa.gov).

chalkley-disability-child-disabilityChildhood Disability – Children, regardless of age, up to 18 years of age may be entitled to Supplemental Security Income (SSI).  These benefits are based on Social Security’s definition of childhood disability:

The child must have physical or mental condition(s) which seriously limits his or her activities; and the disability(ies) must have lasted, or be expected to last at least 1 year, or result in death.

The eligibility of these benefits are also subject to income and resources.

For children who are 18 or older, and who have a disability that began before age 22, they may quality for benefits from a parent’s records.  These children must meet the adult definition of disability, and the parent must be receiving benefits, or be deceased.  Again, the parent must have enough credits.