Don’t Get Frozen Out of Social Security Disability: A Disability Freeze Can HelpBy Kenton Koszdin on September 7, 2018 | In Social Security Disability
If you or a family member has a disability, you know that there are certain times when you are unable to work. You also may have had periods of employment when you earned less money because of your medical condition. Without a “disability freeze,” these periods of unemployment or low wages may reduce your Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits or retirement benefits or even make you ineligible.
The “disability freeze” is an SSDI feature created by the Social Security Administration to help preserve an individual’s eligibility for future disability and retirement benefits. In effect, the disability freeze helps to decrease the impact of low earnings years. By freezing an individual’s insured status, eligibility for future retirement and disability benefits is preserved.
How a Disability Freeze Works
Basically, a disability freeze is a period of time when your earnings won’t count when calculating your SSDI or Social Security retirement benefits. Because your benefit is based on an average of your historical earnings, by omitting low or no-earnings years when you were disabled your SSDI benefit may be higher.
First, you must qualify for a disability freeze. To be eligible, you must:
- Have insured SSDI status based on your work history – you must have worked long enough while paying FICA taxes,
- File for a disability freeze while disabled and within 12 months of when your disability ends,
- Provide proof of your disability during the period, and
- Be disabled or blind as defined by the Social Security Administration.
Even if you aren’t already receiving SSDI payments, you may qualify for a disability freeze. Then, when you later apply for SSDI, your payments may be higher because your period of disability will be considered when calculating your benefit.
Applying for a disability freeze is complicated. It is in your best interest to consult with an attorney experienced in SSDI applications and appeals for the best outcome for you and your family.
We Can Help With Your Social Security Disability Application and Appeal
If you or a loved one has been denied Worker’s Compensation or Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, it’s important to consult with an experienced attorney. Call The Kenton Koszdin Law Office at 800.438.7734 for your initial free consultation, either in our office or in the comfort of your own home. Kenton Koszdin, Social Security attorney in Van Nuys, CA can help you navigate the application process for the best possible outcome for you and your family.