If you have been awarded Social Security disability benefits by the Social Security Administration (SSA), you will probably also be entitled to back pay benefits, also known as past due benefits. When your claim for disability benefits is approved, make sure you know whether or not you are entitled to back pay benefits as well, and contact an attorney if you have questions.
When your application for Social Security disability is approved, you are entitled to start receiving your benefits on the sixth full month after the date that your disability began. Because it is very likely that it took months’ worth of time to process your claim, you may be entitled to past due benefits for this time frame. In fact, in some cases, you may also be eligible for retroactive benefits up to one year prior to the date of your original application for Social Security disability benefits.
The Social Security Administration uses two important dates to calculate how much you are owed in disability back pay: Your claim application date and your disability established onset date (EOD). The date that you file your application is typically considered your EOD, and the date that will be used to determine back pay. However, if your disability began well before you applied for benefits, you can challenge the EOD – you should hire an attorney to represent you during this process.
Remember, there is still the five month waiting period. For example, if the onset date of your disability was 12 months from the date that you were approved for benefits, you would be entitled to seven months of backpay. As a note, there is no mandatory five-month waiting period for SSI (Supplemental Security Income) claims.
Past due benefits are paid in one of two ways: as a lump-sum payment or in three separate payment increments. You will most likely receive the payment in three periodic payments unless special circumstances warrant a lump-sum payment.
When you are filing a claim for Social Security disability benefits, it is important to know as much as you can about the process and be prepared for any hiccups along the way. It is also important to understand the full extent of the benefits to which you are entitled, including disability back pay.
At The Comerford Law Office, LLC, we want to make sure that you get your full benefit amount. We can represent you if there is a dispute over your established onset date, and help you to understand for which months you may be entitled to benefits.
To learn more about our services and the Social Security disability process, contact us today. A consultation with our experienced Chicago Social Security lawyers is always free.
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