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Understanding Social Security Disability Benefits

Wilson & McQueen March 23, 2023

Under the law, those who suffer from a serious disability that prevents them from working or obtaining reasonable means of support may be entitled to receive Social Security disability benefits to help them make ends meet. However, there are a range of different programs under which individuals with a disability may qualify.

Generally speaking, Social Security disability benefits may come from two main sources: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). These different programs pay substantially different amounts to those who suffer from disabilities or who have children with disabilities, and eligibility requirements can vary substantially between the two of them. Therefore, it’s important to understand who may apply for these programs.


The following is a brief explanation of the main differences between SSDI and SSI:

  • SSDI: this program pays benefits on the basis of an individual’s past work history or, in the case of children who developed a disability before the age of 22, on the basis of their parent’s work history. Eligibility, therefore, depends on how long an individual worked and what their income was in that time.

  • SSI: this program pays benefits to low-income individuals who suffer from a disability or blindness. Eligibility depends on meeting certain criteria relating to income and assets.

These are the main differences between the two programs, and securing assistance through one of these programs can make an enormous difference in the lives of those who suffer from disabilities.

Contact an SSD Attorney in Lexington Today

If you suffer from a disability and are considering applying for Social Security disability benefits, we can help. Contact the attorneys at Wilson & McQuen, PLLC, by calling today to speak with a qualified legal professional and learn more about how we can help.