General Question

augustlan's avatar

I became disabled while I was a stay-at-home mom. Could I collect Social Security benefits?

Asked by augustlan (47689points) June 15th, 2009

Inspired by another SS benefits question.

I stayed home for 14 years, and developed Fibromyalgia during that time. My doctor said I met the qualifications to be disabled, and unable to work. However, the SS office said that since I hadn’t worked in the last 10 years, I wouldn’t qualify. I didn’t even bother going through the process to be declared disabled, and just dropped the idea, as I didn’t really need the money at that time.

I can no longer afford to be a stay-at-home mom, so I’ve been trying to find a part-time job, as I think I might be able to handle that… but what if I can’t? Should I pursue this?

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14 Answers

kenmc's avatar

I’d say persue if you have absolutely no other choice but to persue.

knitfroggy's avatar

You should probably call a lawyer, you’re going to need one if you do decide to file and are denied.

avalmez's avatar

i believe the requirement is ten years in your life, not the last ten years of your life. i also think they have to be consecutive years, but not certain.

YARNLADY's avatar

The plan that you were denied is for workers who become disabled. There is also a Social Security Disability plan for people who become disabled and unable to work but do not already have a job. Get a Disability lawyer who will be able to file the proper paperwork for the plan that would best fit your circumstances. The Social Security Administration workers get commendations based on the amount of money they save the taxpayers (read deny benefits), and will not be very helpful.

whatthefluther's avatar

@augustlan…You probably would not qualify for Social Security-Disabled benefits, but you may well qualify for Supplemental Security Income which is also handled by the Social Security Administration. The link identifies eligibility requirements, etc.. Good luck to you.

augustlan's avatar

Thanks for all the input! I just used the screening tool at WTF’s link, and it looks like I’m not eligible. Sad. :(

RedPowerLady's avatar

Be careful with the screening tools. They can be a bummer.
It probably depends on your total household income.
My mother never worked but she did qualify for SSI. So I know it does not have to depend on you working the last few years or she would have never received it.

augustlan's avatar

I think it’s my husband’s income (not a lot!) that is disqualifying me.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@augustlan That is the working class for you. We get stuck in in-between land. Don’t qualify for help but we don’t get paid a lot so we need help. Argh!

YARNLADY's avatar

@augustlan If you let the internet screening thing stop you, you’re doomed before you even start. That is exactly why they put it there, it saves their personnel from having to make the first denial. Apply, and get yourself a lawyer.

augustlan's avatar

I’ll definitely consider that. Thanks!

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

There are two types of social security benefits: SSI and SSDI. SSI is sorta like welfare, you receive a certain amount each month regardless of what your previous salary history is. To the best of my knowledge, you generally receive somewhere between 300–1000 dollars a month. SSDI figures out how much you were earning for the past five years, and then keeps that amount going for x amount of time (no idea how long x is). Applying is a long and tedious process that can take years. Almost everyone gets rejected the first time around as a way of weeding out applicants that aren’t really serious. You can appeal the decision, but it will take a long time. It’s been a few years since I last checked into all this, so talk to a lawyer about the most current regulations.

YARNLADY's avatar

@augustlan Did you follow through? What happened?

augustlan's avatar

@papayalily Thanks for weighing in on this.

@YARNLADY <kicks dirt sheepishly> No, ma’am… not yet. :(

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