At any moment, anyone could experience an injury or develop a medical condition that leaves them unable to support themselves. In these situations, Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) provides the benefits and medical care workers need. However, the application and qualification process can be complicated, so getting the compensation you deserve often depends on understanding the system.

What Is Social Security Disability?

SSDI is a program designed to cover American workers who are unable to work due to illness or injury. Disabled workers who are approved for disability are also eligible for Medicare, no matter their age or medical condition.

What Is the Qualification Criteria?

Total Disability

social security disabilityDisability benefits are reserved for people who are totally disabled, which means they’re unable to work in any capacity. To determine eligibility, the Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a list of impairments that automatically qualify as a total disability. If your particular medical issue isn’t listed, you’ll likely need to submit medical records proving that your illness or injury makes it impossible to work in a meaningful capacity.

Work History

Since disability is an insurance program, recipients must show that they’ve paid into the system. The SSA awards workers one point for earning a certain amount, with a maximum of four points per year. Most people will need to have accumulated 40 credits to qualify for Social Security Disability, although the actual amount required depends on your age.

How Does It Affect Your Children & Spouses?

Both children and spouses of qualified workers may be eligible for benefits based on their family member’s work history. Even if the worker has passed away, their loved ones can still receive medical care and cash benefits. In most cases, these benefits continue until the child turns 18 or the surviving spouse remarries.


Navigating the SSDI process can be confusing. Luckily, the attorneys at Allen, Nelson & Wilson have over 60 years of combined experience guiding disabled workers through the system and advocating for their interests. Visit their website for more on how they can help you successfully file a claim, or call (573) 441-2667 to reach their office in Columbia, MO. To consult with a lawyer in Springfield, dial (888) 549-2667.