About Retroactive Social Security Disability Benefits
During the coronavirus pandemic, many Pennsylvania residents on disability are concerned about receiving their payments. A claim for Social Security disability benefits may require a determination whether a present or former claimant is entitled to receive a retroactive payment of disability benefits.
Disability benefits are a pre-established payment amount that continue monthlyfor the duration of the disability. This monthly payment is determined primarily by an individual's record of work earnings. In contrast, recipients of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits receive an amount equal to the maximum amount allowed by Social Security less permissible amounts of income and other assets.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI): For example, an applicant applies for SSI benefits on April 1, 2020, and receives approval, then April 1, 2020, is the first day the applicant may receive any retroactive payments once a benefit award is received. Thus, if an application for benefits is approved on October 1, 2020, claimants will receive monthly payments for the six-month period that an eligibility decision was pending.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): Social Security regulations require that SSDI applicants do not receive any retroactive pay for a five-month waiting period, which amounts to the first five months of disability. However, applicants are permitted to receive retroactive payment for up to twelve months prior to the date that an application for SSDI benefits was filed if the applicant was disabled.