There are two programs that are administered by Social Security; Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income. The primary difference is that SSDI provides disability benefits for those applicants that have worked and paid into FICA while SSI provides disability benefits to do not have enough work credits to qualify for SSDI. Neither program is automatic; there are strict criteria on who will be approved and who will have their application rejected. Rejection is not the end of the line, a disability lawyer in Tennessee can often help overturn the decision.

What is Supplemental Security Income (SSI)?

SSI is a needs based program which is based on the applicant’s income and assets. Both SSDI and SSI are administered by Social Security but the funding comes from different sources. The funding for SSDI comes from FICA taxes whereas SSI is funded by tax money from the general fund. SSI is not based on work history; it is strictly a means tested program. The threshold to qualify for SSI is very low; the applicant must have less than $2,000 in assets and a limited income.

What is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)?

SSDI is very different; first off it is funded through payroll taxes and is not a program designed for those with limited assets or income. People that can apply for SSDI are those that have been employed for a number of years and, during this period of employment, contributed to the Social Security trust fund through their FICA tax deductions.

Candidates for SSDI often engage a disability lawyer in Tennessee to assist them with their application and in the event their initial application is denied, which many are.

Recipients of SSI or SSDI are also eligible for Medicare, in the case of SSI; Medicare cover is immediate whereas the SSDI recipient becomes eligible after two years of receiving his or her disability benefits.

There can be complexities when applying for either SSI or SSDI and you may find it is in your best interest to hire a disability lawyer in Tennessee to assist you. You are invited to discuss the particulars of your situation with the Law Offices of Miller & Drozdowski, P.C.

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