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    How Long Do I Have to Work to Be Eligible for SSDI?


    Were you injured and are now unable to work? You might be able to receive assistance from Social Security disability insurance. Here’s what you need to know about SSDI, and how a social security disability attorney can help you get the benefits you deserve.

    What is SSDI and How is it Different from SSI?

    SSDI stands for Social Security disability insurance, and is sometimes just referred to as Social Security Disability (SSD). It is funded through payroll taxes, and those who receive it have contributed to the Social Security trust form through FICA Social Security taxes. SSDI is available to workers who have accumulated a certain number of work credits, which is how it differs from SSI.

    SSI refers to Supplemental Security Income. Low-income people who have never worked or have not gained a sufficient amount of work credits can receive SSI benefits.

    How Do I Qualify for SSDI?

    To receive Social Security disability insurance, you must be younger than 65 years old. You also need “work credits.” The Social Security Administration converts the money you’ve earned over the years into work credits to see if you qualify for SSDI.

    As of 2016, one Social Security work credit is equal to $1,260. Four credits is the maximum you can earn in one year, and that is equal to $5,040. To receive SSDI, you need to pass both the “recent work test” and the “duration of work test.”

    Recent Work Test

    As you get older, you need an increasing amount of accrued working credits to receive SSDI. Here are the guidelines:

    • If you are younger than 24 years old, you have to have worked for at least a year and half — or earned six credits — in the three years before your disability occurred.
    • If you are between the ages of 24 and 31, you must have worked for at least half the period of time since you turned 21. This means if you are 27, you have to have worked three out of the past six years, which is equivalent to 12 work credits.
    • For 31 year olds and older, to pass the recent work test, you must have worked at least 5 out of the past 10 years. This is equal to 20 credits in the 10 years before your disability occurred.

    Duration of Work Test

    To see if you qualify for SSDI, find your age below. The number listed next to your ages is the amount of years you need to have worked.

    Age 21-24: 1.5 years

    Age 24-31: 1.5-4.5 years

    Age 31-42: 5 years

    Age 44: 5.5 years

    Age 46: 6 years

    Age 48: 6.5 years

    Age 50: 7 years

    Age 52: 7.5 years

    Age 54: 8 years

    Age 56: 8.5 years

    Age 58: 9 years

    Age 60: 9.5 years

    Age 62 and older: 10 years

    Working With A Social Security Disability Attorney

    Working directly with a Social Security disability attorney at Disparti Law Group will ensure you get the benefits you deserve. If you have any questions at all, don’t be afraid to reach out to a Tampa SSDI lawyer who can offer you guidance and comfort throughout the process. He or she will know all the details and make it his or her business to get you the help you need.

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    The Disparti Law Group is one of the most successful law firms serving the greater Chicago and Tampa areas. As the leader in Injury, Disability, Workers’ Comp, and Employment Law, with more than $1 Billion in recoveries, The Disparti Law Group has been named One of the Most Influential Law Firms in America by Trial Lawyer Magazine.

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