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Did you know that your age affects social security disability benefits as much or more than any other factor?  A lot of people think that you have to be 65 years old to get social security disability, but those folks are confusing disability with retirement.  The fact is, you can get social security disability at any age as long as you meet the eligibility criteria.  However, your age does affect how easy it will be for you to meet those requirements.

Social Security Disability Age Categories

The social security laws place people into age categories.  People aged 18 to 44 are young individuals.  Applicants that are 45-49 are younger individuals.  Those 50 to 54 are closely approaching advanced age. Individuals 55 and over are in the advanced age category. And finally, individuals 60 to 65 are closely approaching retirement age.

The Way Age Affects Social Security Disability Benefits

The older you are, the more your age affects social security disability benefits, depending on your education and work skills.  For example, if you are 49, have little formal education, and are limited to sedentary work, you would be denied disability if you can read and write.  But if you are 51, with the same conditions, you can be granted disability benefits.  The change in age category changes the eligibility criteria.  You no longer have to prove that you can’t do any work at all. You only need to prove that your work limitations require you to perform your work sitting down.

The Social Security rules are even better for individuals who are 55 and older. If a person is 55 or older and is limited to light duty work, they may be approved for disability if they have a high school education and their prior work experience was something like manual labor.

The older you are, the less the social security administration expects you to go through retraining to return to work.  This means that age affects social security disability benefits more than anything else!

This is the reason why hiring a social security disability lawyer can be so helpful.  Knowing how to manipulate the combinations of age, job skills and education to your advantage can be the difference in winning and losing.