Once You’re Approved for SSD Benefits: What Happens Next?

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You’ve done everything the right way and are relieved to receive your disability award letter in the mail. But what does this mean? And what happens next?

When the Social Security Administration (SSA) approves your application and you qualify for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, the SSA will send you an award letter, which outlines the amount of your payments and when they are to begin. You usually won’t receive your first payment for six months.

How Long Will I Receive The Payments For?

 You will continue to receive SSD benefit payments per your award letter so long as your condition remains the same and you are still unable to work. However, if your condition does in fact improve and your ability to work changes, it is your duty to contact the SSA and notify it of these changes.

The SSA will conduct regular reviews to check in on the status of your disability. These are referred to as Continuing Disability Reviews.

Receiving SSD Benefit Payments Electronically

 If you applied for your benefits on or after May 1, 2011, your benefits will be paid out electronically; you should have signed up for them when you applied.

There are a few different ways in which you may receive your SSD benefit payments electronically. These include:

  • Direct Deposit
  • Direct Express®
  • Electronic Transfer Account

If this was not the case, the U.S. Treasury Department will send your benefits payments via the Direct Express® card program.

What Happens When You Retire?

Once you reach the full age of retirement, your SSD benefits will automatically convert to retirement benefits and will stay the same. However, an exception is you are receiving reduced widow(er)’s benefits.  If you are receiving reduced widow(er)’s benefits you will need to contact the SSA when you reach full retirement age so that it can adjust your benefits accordingly.

Individuals are able to receive Medicare benefits once they have been receiving SSD benefits for a period of two years. But you need not fret about remembering this milestone, as the SSA will send you information on your future Medicare coverage.

Let The Disability Attorneys of Michigan Help You

For 20 years, Disability Attorneys of Michigan has helped the disabled of Michigan obtain the Social Security Disability Benefits they deserve. If you are unable to work due to a physical, mental or cognitive impairment, call Disability Attorneys of Michigan now for a free consultation at 800-949-2900.

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I will never forget you and the hard work you did to secure my Social Security Disability benefits. Thank you!

- Christine C.