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DisabilityDoes Disability Cover My Family?

November 15, 2021

If you’re awarded disability benefits from the Social Security Administration, you may be wondering: Does disability cover my family? In this blog post, we will discuss if disability covers your family — and how the disability claims process works, especially with the help of a disability lawyer. 

Who Is Covered by Disability? 

Once you start receiving disability payments, your family may also qualify for benefits based on your work history. Among those who may qualify include your spouse, your former spouse, your children, or adult children disabled before age 22. If any of your qualified family members apply for disability benefits from the SSA, they will need their birth certificates and Social Security numbers. A spouse will need to provide the marriage certificate and any dates of previous marriages – along with divorce decrees. 

There is a maximum family amount that the SSA will pay. Each family member may be eligible to receive as much as 50 percent of your awarded disability amount. There is a limit, however, to how much the SSA will pay out. The total monthly benefit will vary, depending on the claimant’s benefit amount and the number of qualifying family members. Usually, the total amount that the family can receive is anywhere from 150 percent to 180 percent of the claimant’s disability benefit. If a divorced spouse qualifies for benefits from you, then it will not affect the amounts that the claimant or the claimant’s family receives. 

SSDI Versus SSI 

Keep in mind, this applies only to the families of people who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), not Supplemental Security Income (SSI). SSDI is funded by taxes paid by employers and working people. It operates on a pay-as-you-go funding model. SSI is needs-based. It pays benefits to people in need regardless of their ability to pay taxes by working. The program is funded by general revenues instead of Social Security taxes. You can read more about SSDI and SSI here

 Social Security Disability Lawyer in Omaha and Council Bluffs 

Watson & Carroll, P.C., L.L.O.’s Social Security Disability team can help you secure benefits needed  to support yourself and your family. Chellsie Weber, our wildly successful and experienced disability attorney, and Abby Reid, our wonderful and thorough disability paralegal, can offer support and advice as it pertains to your disability and the benefits approval process. Remember, you’re more likely to have a successful disability claim with an attorney by your side. Call us today at 402-991-2100. You also can share your story here.

When Can My Husband or Wife Receive My Disability Benefits? 

Your spouse can receive benefits from you if they are aged 62 or older unless they have a higher benefit based on their record. Your spouse can qualify for benefits from your account at any age if they care for your child under 16 years of age or if the child was disabled before age 22 and is eligible for benefits. If your spouse is eligible for retirement benefits based on their own work record, that amount would be paid first. If the spouse’s benefit payable on the claimant’s record is the higher amount, they will receive a combination of the two benefits totaling the higher amount. If your spouse receives a pension that was for work not covered by Social Security, then their benefit based on the claimant’s record could be reduced. 

If you are divorced your ex-spouse may qualify for benefits from your work record even if you remarried. If your ex-husband or ex-wife will receive a pension based on work that the SSA did not cover, then their benefits from your work record could be affected. To qualify, your ex-spouse must have been married to you for 10 years at least, be at least 62 years of age, not be married, or not be eligible for a benefit amount that is equal or higher on their own Social Security earnings record or someone else’s record. Any benefits that your ex-spouse receives will not affect the benefits of your current spouse. 

How Do I File a Social Security Disability Claim? 

If you are ready to get your disability claim underway, call the offices of Watson and Carroll, P.C., L.L.O. Our experienced disability attorneys have helped countless disabled individuals access their disability benefits. 

About Watson & Carroll 

Watson & Carroll, P.C., L.L.O., is not a high-volume law firm that only speaks with clients when it is absolutely necessary. For us, it’s personal. Our team works closely with our clients and their loved ones – not only so that we understand their challenges and concerns, but so we can tailor our approach to address those factors, aggressively pursue results, and secure peace of mind. Whether it is a medical malpractice case or advocating for disability benefits, we work to protect our clients and make sure their rights are upheld. 

Our firm can help. Call 402-991-2100 or email contact@watsoncarroll.com. You also can fill out our confidential contact form


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