If you’re ready to retire, congratulations! You’ve worked hard and deserve to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
Whether you’re going straight from the workplace to full-time retirement or simply taking some time off between jobs, you might be wondering how exactly SSDI will affect your finances. The good news is that if you’ve paid into the Social Security system for 10 years, then it’s very likely that you’ll qualify for benefits.
The first step is applying for your benefits online at ssa.gov/apps/applications/ssa5804/index.html. It’s easy, and there are plenty of resources available on this site to help walk you through it step by step.
Once you have submitted your application, it will be reviewed by an administrator who will determine whether or not you qualify based on your work history and other factors like health conditions like diabetes or heart disease (if they affect your ability to work). If they decide that yes indeedy—you do qualify—then they’ll process your application and send out a letter informing you of the decision as well as instructions on how to receive payments from them every month from now until whenever (hopefully forever).
The SSA administers two different retirement programs: Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). You can apply for Social Security retirement benefits online at ssa.gov/youraccount. You’ll need a personal identification number (PIN) to apply—if you don’t have one, you can get one by calling the toll-free number at 800-772-1213.
Once you’ve applied for Social Security, you’ll receive a letter from the SSA with instructions on how to start receiving benefits. You may need to wait a few months before receiving your first check.
The Social Security Administration offers a number of retirement benefits to people who have worked enough years and paid into the system.
You can start collecting benefits when you reach full retirement age, which is now 66 or 67, depending on the year you were born. You can also get reduced benefits as early as age 62, but they will be smaller than if you wait until your full retirement age. If you are disabled and unable to work before age 62, you may be able to receive Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) payments before your full retirement age.
When you reach your full retirement age, whether it’s 66 or 67, we’ll automatically convert your disability benefits into retirement benefits. Once you reach full retirement age, even if you’re still disabled and unable to work, we’ll pay you both SSDI and Social Security Retirement Insurance (SSRI).
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