Georgia residents make many important decisions over the course of their lives. Often, these decisions involve financial matters, including career choices, investments and other issues.

There are frequently important decisions that have to be made when it comes to Social Security disability benefits for illness as well. For example, the decision of when and how to apply for disability benefits is faced by many who are unable to work.

For those nearing the age of retirement, these decisions can be tricky. Typically, a person aged 66 or older receives the same benefit through their Social Security retirement as they would for a disability benefit for someone over the age of 66. Accordingly, there may not be much advantage or purpose for some in applying for disability benefits under these circumstances.

On the other hand, those under the age of 62 are too young for their Social Security retirement benefits, but they can receive disability benefits under the federal regulations if they are unable to work. As a result, these individuals should file for disability benefits if they will satisfy the criteria for being considered disabled.

Those individuals between the age of 62 and 66 may be able to file for both retirement and disability benefits at the same time. The retirement payments typically can begin immediately, while the disability benefit process may take some more time. However, if approved for disability benefits, the person’s benefits could then be adjusted to the higher rate after approval.

Ultimately, decisions involving Social Security disability benefits will depend on the circumstances of each case. Accordingly, individuals should understand the disability benefit process in order to make the best possible decision.

Source: Tuscon.com, “Social Security and you: When seniors become disabled,” Tom Margenau, Dec. 2, 2016