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Your Last Day Of Work And Why It Matters To The Social Security Administration

For those unable to work at their jobs because of a medical issue, the Social Security Administration (SSA) may provide monetary benefits on a monthly basis. It's not easy to determine eligibility for benefits, however. The SSA uses complex financial information about your income within a certain period of time along with other medical and vocational information when figuring out your eligibility and the amount of your monthly benefit. All of that means that the day you last worked is of the utmost importance when you apply for benefits. Read on and learn more.

The Date of Last Insurance

Those who have to stop working when a mental or medical condition affects them may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). With each paycheck workers earn, the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) deducts a percentage. Those deductions are targeted at several programs, but some of it goes to to the SSA for disability as well as retirement benefit programs. When you stop working, you also stop contributing to the plan. The date you last worked is referred to by the SSA as the date of last insurance (DLI). Unfortunately, if you have not worked for some time and then try to apply for SSDI benefits, you may be turned down.

Periods of Unemployment

Waiting a few months after you leave your job should not affect your eligibility. The SSA looks at your previous ten years of employment to verify you worked during at least five of those years. The five years don't have to be consecutive. On the day you fill out your application, count back ten from that date.

If You Don't Have Recent Work History

Fortunately, the SSA understands that some cannot meet the requirements for applying in time. Also, some groups of people are exempt from the time requirement. For example, those under the age of 31 have less restrictive work history requirements, and the blind don't have any time restrictions. You may also qualify for what is known as a protective filing status if you can show that your disability affected your ability to file in time.

Having no recent work history is only one of the dozens of issues disabled workers run into when applying for SSDI. You can be turned down for that and other reasons, but you can also file and request an appeal hearing. Speak to a Social Security lawyer to find out more about the reason your claim for benefits was turned down.