How Much You Can Get from Disability Benefits?By Kenton Koszdin Law Office on April 1, 2015 | In Social Security Disability
Disability benefits can provide you with the financial support you need after suffering a long-term physical or mental impairment. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits cannot equal the amount of money you were earning before your injury, but it can help keep you and your family financially protected. In order to qualify, you must prove you are insured under the program and that you qualify as disabled.
Disability benefits are calculated from covered earnings. In other words, your disability benefits are dependent upon the amount of wages you paid toward Social Security taxes before you became disabled. To determine the amount of your benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) uses your Average Indexed Monthly Earnings (AIME) and your Primary Insurance Amount (PIA). This is a complicated process that is not easily explained.
Everyone receives a different amount, but the average SSDI benefit amount for 2015 is $1,165 per month. It is possible, however, to receive as much as $2,663 a month. The amount you receive will depend upon your lifetime earnings and the base amount of your benefits. A disability attorney may be needed to help you understand the specific amount that may be available if you qualify. You could also visit www.ssa.gov/mystatement to see how much you can earn if you become disabled this year.
When calculating how much you may receive through disability benefits, it is important to consider a number of complicated factors. For example, if you received workers’ compensation settlements, that could reduce your benefit amount. Other forms of compensation, such as veteran’s benefits or payments from a private insurance provider, do not affect your monthly benefit amount.
Depending on how long it takes for you to receive approval for disability benefits, you may be due quite a bit of back pay. The SSA will look at when you applied for benefits and when the SSA decided you became disabled. This is called your established onset date. You can also pursue up to 12 months of retroactive payments for the year prior to your application date if you were unable to work then as well. A disability attorney can review your case and help you understand all of your legal options.