SSDI length of time for back pay?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 11/18/2012 - 00:19

When I initially met with my attorney, I was told that back pay would go back one year from application, minus 5 months (I had already waited over 2 years to file because I was told I would have "full recovery" after my 2 fusion surgeries). I've received my acceptance letter but not my back pay yet, and during my search for more info on the process I came across a SSDI page stating that even if it takes 24 months for your claim to get approved, you can only receive pay for 12 months. Can anybody help clarify this for me please? Also, I have friends who received their back pay before or immediately after their approval letters (NY), but I've seen posts by people saying it took several months so I was wondering if there was a formula for when I can expect mine? I'm not looking to go on a spending spree, but I have a mortgage, car payment, property and school taxes, and children to feed and clothe as well as one in an expensive college. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and all input is appreciated.

Debi (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:36 Permalink

Deanna, do u know anything about my situation? I was approved. Received letters from SSD & SSI stating how much backpay I would get about 7 months ago($29,000 SSD)& ($11,000 SSI) Now I've been told that the SSI backpay (11,000) is going to be deducted from my SSD backpay (29,000) my lawyer already received his $6,000 (was told his came out of the $29,000...although I haven't received MY part of $29,000 SSD) SO...My question is this..is this true? 29,000-6,000=23,000 (-lawyer) then..23,000-11,000=12,000 On TOP of that, I was told (by Very Rude Lady, I'll add) they will also take out the total amount of my monthly checks that I've been getting (234.00 a month for approx 4 months now & that #increases each month) Does Anyone know if this is true? In the beginning the same (rude) lady @SSI told me the amounts stating quote "u will b getting a substantial amount of $, because we (SSI) r paying $11,000 backpay & SSD will b paying u $29,000 backpay" Then months later (last month) the Main SSI office (not local) told me this devastating information!! Anyone know which is right? I am going to try to write another post that goes into more detail, only to provide more info (in case someone needs more to help me AND to maybe help others that I have seen ask questions about multiple things that I have experienced)

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:36 Permalink

Hi Debi,
I'm sorry to hear that you've had so much difficulty with the SSA! We aren't affiliated with the SSA so I cannot personally look up your case. I have honestly never heard of a case like this so I don't think I can be too much help to you. It makes absolutely no sense for the SSA to deduct your SSI backpay from your SSDI back pay. I could understand if they didn't award you both, but subtracting the $11,000 makes no sense. I would definitely get in touch with your lawyer and ask him about it.
On top of that, I have also never heard of back pay being subtracted from monthly benefits, but it could the SSA reducing your SSI benefit. If they lump your SSI and SSDI payments into one monthly check, your SSI benefits may be reduced due to the back pay from SSDI. That's the only reasonable answer I can think of, but again, you'll need to speak with an SSA representative (hopefully not the rude one) to learn more about your specific case.
If your lawyer received $6,000, you should not be able to receive less than $18,000. A lawyer's maximum payment is 25% of your back pay, with a limit of $6,000. So if he took 25% of your back pay, your total amount to be received should have been at least $24,000+ (leaving you with $18,000+ after his fees).
Something is very fishy here. I am sorry I cannot be more help, but your payments are not adding up. I would consider going to the SSA office in person to try to work something out. Good luck.

Debi (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:36 Permalink

I tried to ask my lawyer about this, but unfortunately he told me he couldn't help. He said all he does is help with the process of getting me approved, nothing else. And since he's already received his $6000.00...well. I am going to try calling my LOCAL SS office, as the Main SS office (in Washington) already told me I should have already received my back pay. To make things clearer (for others here) it was the SSI office that told me the $11,000(SSI backpay) would b taken out of the $29,000(SSD backpay). I pray this isn't so. Although, I did see someone elses post on here saying they were told the same thing! It was post #27 (I think...way back) Also would like to add, S.S. office has always been very polite (& Very helpful)...but as of the S.S.I. office? Every time I have spoken to them they were so rude & downright mean that I'm honestly scared to call them again. I will try to keep any relevant info posted, to help others. TY so much again!

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:36 Permalink

Hi Debi,
No problem at all, I am glad to be any help!
Yes, please keep me updated! I had no idea the SSA can actually subtract SSI back pay from SSDI back pay. If that's the case and others have had this same issue, I'll be sure to write a FAQ or blog post about it. I have never heard of this before and there is not a lot of information out there on the subject! It seems ridiculous to me so I really hope that isn't the case. Good luck!

Karl (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:36 Permalink

Debi, I am in the same boat with almost the same exact amounts they explained it to me like this SSI is paying you for let's say 10 months because you were approved for benefits on both medical and financial levels. SSI is income based therefore when you were supposed to actually receive your first SSDI check after your 5 month waiting period your were technically "overpaid" by SSI. Even though you weren't recieving it yet. So they are paying you actually up to the date you physically receive your first SSDI check. In a lump sum since you were just approved but SSDI is also paying for those same months so they are taking it back. Actually SSDI should reduce your back pay by the amount of your SSI back pay other than the 5 month waiting period. SSI starts right off the bat no waiting so 5 months of that is yours no penalty the rest should be deducted.
I took my SSDI back pay added 5 months waiting period SSI back pay minus attorney fees and that is the "money in your pocket"
It is a bit confusing and they present is like your getting them both but your not. Take your monthly SSI check times it by 5 and and add your SSDI back pay minus lawyers fees and that what you'll get pretty much +/- a few hundred bucks I bet ya. Hope this helped but probably just confused you more cause I was confused even typing it. Good luck and hope everything works out lord knows I am ready to choke the Social Security office.

Anonymous (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:37 Permalink

When she got her back pay in january of 2013, it did not includ our daughters 300 per month. So she applied for it and got it two weeks later, this also included one year of back pay for the (dependent payments). we are wondering if thay were suposed to go back to 2009 for the dependent payments just like her regular months ??? espically since when Terri filed her applaction in 2010 ssdi knew about our daughter.

Anonymous (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:37 Permalink

Hi Terri and Brian,
I believe that SSI back pay for children only goes back for 12 months. Adults can get payments from when they applied, but many online sources state that back pay for SSI will only last for 12 months. You should call your local SSA office to confirm though.

Anonymous (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:37 Permalink

No question, hopefully an answer to some of yours. I received my fully favorable decision from the Judge on 12/23/14. Received a letter & phone call from local SSI office 2 weeks later. Had my appointment at SSI on 1/12/15. Received 1st $2100 payment from SSI on 1/14/15. Called SSI rep. On 1/30/15 and explained to her my DESPERATE financial problems, received another lump sum payment on 2/2/15 & my first monthly SSI benefit payment on 1/30/15. Received Notice of Award of SSDI in middle February 2015. Received my SSDI back pay on 2/25/15 & my first monthly benefit payment on 2/27/15. I have NOT received a letter breaking down any amounts as my Notice of Award letter said it would be mailed separately. I also have NOT received back pay or monthly benefits for my daughter yet. My SSI rep. says they do that last and at this rate she will be married before she gets it! As for Medicare, yeah I got it, but it's a JOKE! Finally, it is very important to take EVERY IN YOUR FILING CABINET TO YOUR 1st APPOINTMENT WITH SSI!! Pray you have an older more experienced rep. that takes pride in her work and likes her job and ALWAYS be as kind, sweet, caring and courteous as you can be (which is not easy when you have borderline personality disorder!)Tell them how much you appreciate their hard work and is there any way you can let their supervisor know how hard he/she has worked for you! I know with absolute certainty it got me my 2nd SSI packpay payment in a couple of weeks instead of 6 months! And for your reference I live in Indiana.

Lynn (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:38 Permalink

I applied for SSI for my son in february 2013 in florida.. His first denial was June 2013 filed reconsideration in June 2013 found out yesterday he was approved. A friend of his took care of him providing shelter ect. is his friend eligible for repayment from his benefits? and should his benefits go back to the first full month after his application date?

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:38 Permalink

Hi Lynn,
I'm glad to hear your son finally got his benefits. I'm not positive on this, but as far as I know, your son's friend will not likely be reimbursed by the SSA. You can always call the SSA toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 to find out more. As for your son's back pay, it will cover all but one month after he applied, so about March 2013 onward. Because the lump sum will be large, he will probably receive the payments in three installments, six months apart from one another.

Jeremy (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:39 Permalink

my name is jeremy im 20 years old i used to recieve ssi benifits when i was born till the age of 4 as the social security worker approched my dad when one my mom n dad wher not married and two my dad was not my primary care giver, and also when i had turned 4 - 5ish my dad lost my ssi for not reporting his income raises like he was supposed to do, after that when i was 6 when they broke up my mom tried to re apply for getting my ssi back and i got denied. when i was about 14-15 i had to live with my dad when he moved from new york state to indiana ( didnt have a choice) and first thing my dad did was he tried to re apply for my ssi as thats what he was only interested in at the time , and after 7 months i got denied by indiana state and a year later my dad moved me back. i have graduated and i tried the military for computer science and was not able to join do to having aspurgers (signs at the time) and asthma so recently with back with my mom for now i am trying to get my ssi back again. i got denied and am talking with 3 diff attourneys but feel lost because i have one attourney telling me they dont do back pay, another one saying they only go back 17 months and another one i was going to try that said i couldnt recieve back pay. i have aspurgers (to date) asthma , 2 heart murmors , vocal chord paralysis , closed stomach ( can not vomit when sick) tonsilitous cased by the vocal chord paralysis do to a unexpected surgery at birth , physically i have a high metabolism with no upper body strength and have hard time do to the asthma doing anything physicall movement wise on my body. i have been trying to find a ssi attourney that is willing to try and get me backpay from when i have lost it when i was 4 years old i was considerd disabled from birth!! there should be an attourney that will try and get me my backpay from that time is there anyone that knows of a attourney service they can refer me to that can help me with my backpay or any pin pointers on how i can try and get my backpay or at least some???

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:39 Permalink

Hi Jeremy,
I am so sorry to hear about your difficult situation! Unfortunately, you will not be able to find an attorney who can get you your back pay from when you were four years old until now. This is because for SSI recipients, back pay only goes as far back from when you applied. Because you lost your benefits, your back pay would reset to when you re-applied. I am not sure how old you were when you moved in with your mom and applied again, but that would most likely be the date the SSA would use for any potential back payments.

Jeremy (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:40 Permalink

alright thank you so much for the info just i have been thrown around by 4 different attourneys but a friend of mine found me a attourney yesturday that said they would try and get me 3 years of back pay and i could start getting my checks after a month when they take my case but thank you for the information it really helped i had been so stressed out lawyor after lawyor on the backpay situation thank you :)

Ddee (not verified)

In reply to by Jeremy (not verified)

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 20:56 Permalink

Jeremy, you have to remember Attorneys only think in terms of what amount of effort they are willing to put into your case verses what they stand to receive from your disability. So even if you are entitled to go back further to when your parents reapplied and you and or your parents were denied that is still your application date for appeals. I don't think there is a drop dead date time table to appeal a denial or lose your rights to that disability period in the future. If you were permanently disabled the first time, seems odd they would not re-approve your parents re-applied but that is the date going forward unless they won't honor your parents attempts now that your of age and that may be the case but you should find out for sure through your own research. Also, you don't need attorneys to get SSDI if you have the medical records to give SSA to prove your disability. Attorneys don't do the work just some assistant and they don't do what they are suppose to cause their fee is fixed thank God, but it has to go to appeal before they can justify the full 6000.00 fee so they just sit on it to maximize what they can charge you. Good Luck. I got disability on my own although I am a senior and is generally easier as they don't expect to payout as long (life expectancy you know).

Sonya (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:41 Permalink

I have had a cerebral Rapture in June of 2013 , lost my husband to cancer in the same year,while waiting for a follow up apt at Harborveiw Medical Center In Seattle , another one Reacurred the same place , so this last Nov, I finally got my follow up , and thank God we caught it in time , or it would've raptured again , They did a Brain Anuerysm Bypass where they took a blood vessel from my arm and placed it in my head , I waited 2 and a half years for my benefits ,and it didn't say anything about any back pay , just that I will start getting my benefits a month after the award letter, and said they determined me disabled as of Oct 2015,So now I'm curious if I'll be getting any at all , also I can't even get my husbands survivors benefit , I don't understand it either , and my husband was in the USMC.

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:41 Permalink

Hi Sonya,
I am very sorry to hear about this situation. It seems very strange that you did not receive any back pay if you waited 2.5 years to get approved. If you were earning any money between those years, the SSA could have assumed that you were preforming "gainful activity." The SSA may not have all of your medical records, such as the doctor who helped you with the rupture in June 2013. Finally, they simply could have made a mistake when evaluating your claim. You can appeal this established onset date but I would be VERY careful when doing so, because the SSA will look at your entire claim and you could potentially lose all of your benefits. I would recommend contacting a disability advocate or attorney to help you with your EOD claim. You can do so here: http://www.disability-benefits-help.org/form/free-disability-evaluation

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:41 Permalink

I am in Arkansas I stopped working in June 2013. Filed July 1,2013 after 2 denials by mail by November 2013 we filed for ALJ Hearing this was a lengthy wait finally had hearing March 10,2015!! I received my " Fully Favorable" decision dated April 28,2015 in the letter the judge stated my onset date would be June 10,2015. After a couple weeks I called my local office to check on things they were able to verify and tell me A) my monthly amount B) that I would indeed be getting back pay for at least 17-18 months and C) that it was at payment center being processed but could not say when they also verified they had my bank info and it would be via direct deposit and help make things a little faster. So in summary YES you can get more than 12mos back pay on SSDI and there is no set formula for how quick you get it. The payment center has to pay attorney first then any state federal or court ordered judgements such as back child support will come out before you get yours its now May 12,2015 and I'm still waiting we are being evicted end of month due to foreclosure thanks to this process just praying it comes by then!!

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:41 Permalink

This is just a comment. I want to let people who are going through this process know that they are NOT the only ones who have been put through hell. I applied for disability at the end of 2009. I did not have my FIRST hearing until August 2013. The lawyer that contacted me after filling out an online application did NOTHING to help me. She was so incompetent she contradicted something that I said in front of the judge. There was a medical record that she was NOT looking at and after I'd confirmed the date on the medical record she spoke up and said that I was incorrect. After consulting her notes she found that I was indeed CORRECT! Who does that? I received an unfavorable decision even though the conclusion of the judge was that I could NOT return to any of my previous jobs NOR could I work in unskilled labor due to my COPD. If I couldn't work in any of my previous jobs and couldn't work in unskilled labor, HOW could I work? Once I received the unfavorable decision I had to get another lawyer. The previous one didn't even try to fight the judge's decision. I should've been able to file an appeal but my SECOND lawyer said that he doesn't take up a previous attorney's case. HE wanted to start over and file a new application. This was a terrible decision on my part. I should've insisted that an appeal be filed and NOT a new application. This cost me YEARS of back pay. To make a long story short, I've been disabled since the end of 2009 and was NOT approved until 2015. I was stripped of nearly all of my back pay and didn't get my first SSDI check until April 15th, 2015. I have received NO back pay as of this date. When I call the SSA they talk in circles and use complicated terms that I can't decipher. My lawyer has gotten his payment so he's done with me. I can't even get him to call me back. I have been denied so many times that I can't honestly give you an accurate number. I've been denied for every single thing that you can imagine, all just an excuse to NOT pay me the benefits that I deserve. I've been a tax paying citizen since the early 80's and as I understand it these benefits are in part money that I paid into this system in case I should ever become injured or disabled. If you don't have a good lawyer, you really need to do some research in your area and find the BEST disability lawyer in your state. Also, it's been my experience that the judge is not there to award benefits. Their main function is to prove that you are NOT disabled. I have well over 1,000 medical records to support my diagnosis and the severity of my illness. Since applying for disability I've suffered from respiratory failure TWICE and it was only through extreme measures that the hospital staff were able to resuscitate me. The first time I went into respiratory failure I was clinically dead for nearly seven-minutes. However, the judge did NOT include this time as my actual date of disability. My date of disability has been moved around so that I'm going to get next to nothing. PLEASE realize that if you're going through a nightmare over your disability that you are NOT alone. I've read a lot of message boards but haven't found anyone else who's had to wait nearly six-years for approval. The system is not set up to pay you benefits, it's set up to screw you out of as much as they can and to possibly prove that you aren't disabled, regardless of your medical records. I go through hell every single day. And then the ULTIMATE insult to me is that I won't be eligible for Medicare until early 2016. I have many different disabilities but the most severe is COPD. The doctor that I'd been seeing for over 10-years refused to treat me because of my bill. I can't receive the urgent medical help that I need and my prescriptions have all run out. Since my doctor won't treat me or even renew my prescriptions I'm afraid of what will happen. If I could get my back pay I could go to a clinic of some type and at least get the life-saving prescriptions I MUST have.

Heather (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:42 Permalink

i applied for Disability back in2007. I had a letter from my Dr stating that I was disabled and marked my letter as being perm. Disabled. I had a law firm that didn't do much of anything for me. Over the past 8 yr's I had a new judge that made several mistakes and she was my judge 3 times in a row and denied me every time even after it was sent to the fed. Court level and they found all of her mistakes and sent it back before that same judge showing her the mistakes and told her that their recommendation was a favorable decision. She ignored their recommendation and again denied me. Then it went in front of a new judge that also denied me and again I appealed. It then went before another new judge and that time I was told by the judge that I had to come back because my cases were consolidated and he didn't have everything he needed to make a ruling and told my lawyer to come back w/ the needed information that was missing and that happened twice. The third time I went before that judge he said he found my case fully favorable but because of all the mistakes that the other judges made and all the missing information ect. and my file was so large & confusing he was only going to go back to when he first heard my case which was making my onset date in 2012 instead of 2007 when I first filed and should have been approved. I feel like I have been completely put through the ringer and have just fell through the cracks the hole way through this process. Due to everyone else's mistakes and miss management of my case I ended up suffering because of their mistakes. Now my lawyer whom only gets pd if they win the case has my back pay (which will probably not be much of anything since my onset date is only 3 yr's back instead of 8) held up appealing to get paid for the full 8 yr's when they only were able to get me approved for 3 yrs. Will I even be able to get ANY back pay or will they be able to take it all?

D (not verified)
Thu, 11/05/2015 - 16:42 Permalink

Hi Heather,
If you win your case, your lawyer will not be entitled to more than 25% of your back pay, or $6,000, whichever is less.

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