Should I take SSDI or Social Security?

If you are thinking about applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), there are many factors to consider. Many Americans are in the unique position of being around the age of 62 and also having a qualifying disability.

If this is the case, then you need to make the decision whether it is more beneficial for you to apply for SSDI or apply for regular Social Security benefits early. According to the National Council on Aging, it is generally more advantageous to apply for SSDI in this situation, but retroactive applications for SSDI are possible if you need to draw Social Security first.

Why should I wait for Social Security?

While you are eligible for Social Security when you turn 62, if you elect to start drawing at this time it will overall decrease the amount of Social Security that you are eligible for. Generally, it is best practice to wait as long as possible to draw Social Security in order to maximize the amount you receive.

However, depending on your situation you may need to start drawing Social Security early. This happens to many people who are applying for SSDI but need money during the process.

How can I receive retroactive benefits?

You will receive retroactive SSDI benefits if the Social Security Administration decides that you were eligible for SSDI prior to receiving early retirement. This qualifies you for retroactive benefits in the amount of the difference between your original SSDI entitlement and the early retirement payments you have already received.

However, if Social Security determines that your disability did not occur until after you started receiving early retirement payments, then you are not eligible for retroactive benefits.

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