After you turn 50, your age becomes a bigger factor in deciding your eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits. The good news is that the standard shifts and things get a little easier for you.
If you’re under 50, Social Security puts you in the category of a “younger individual.” You must prove your inability to perform ALL competitive jobs to get benefits.
At Baynetta M. Jordan, P.C., Attorney at Law, we often find people misunderstand how this works.
Here’s an example: If you’re in your forties, you work in a physically demanding oil field job and suffer a back injury that leaves you unable to continue, this won’t be enough to prove disability.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve spent your life doing the same kind of work. Social Security will ask if there are any other jobs you could do.
This includes less physically demanding “sit-down” work like a ticket taker, or maybe watching a security screen. It could include jobs that don’t pay as much as your previous job. And Social Security won’t consider how hard it might be to find a different job
If you could hypothetically perform another kind of job, Social Security will decide you don’t have a disability that keeps you from working.
However, if you’re between the ages of 50 and 54, you’re labeled as “closely approaching advanced age.” That’s their name, not ours! But it does mean a better chance for you.
When you reach this age and you can’t perform your previous work, Social Security is more likely to decide you have a disability that keeps you from working entirely.
It’ll also factor in your past work and education. But Social Security recognizes it can be more difficult for a more senior person to switch to a new job.
Social Security assumes it keeps getting more difficult for you to perform physically demanding jobs as you continue to age.
At ages 55 — 59 you’re considered to be of “advanced age.” (Again, their term, not ours!)
And the rules shift again and become even easier for you. At least one good thing about growing older is having an easier time winning disability benefits under Social Security’s rules.
If you live in Midland-Odessa, Brownfield, Denver City, Seminole or anywhere across the Permian Basin, Baynetta M. Jordan, P.C., Attorney at Law, can help make your best case for disability benefits considering your age.
Baynetta Jordan knows the local medical providers, Social Security offices and judges of West Texas.
Whether you need to apply or appeal, let us help with your disability claim. We’ll provide a case evaluation for free.
No matter your age, if you need help with Social Security Disability benefits in West Texas, CALL US.