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Base Years

Base years are the years an individual worked that are used to compute Social Security benefits. Base years include all years after 1950 and up to (but not including) the year that a person became entitled to disability benefits. The SSA may include the year in which a person became entitled to benefits as well as any following years if it will result in a higher benefit amount.

Your base years will directly affect how much you can collect in monthly Social Security Disability benefits. The base years in which you earned the most income will be used as computation years. The amount of income that is calculated for each base year is capped at $106,800. If you earned more than that amount during any base year period, only $106,800 of that year's income will be counted when calculating your Social Security Disability benefits.

Your computation years will be gathered from your base years. The total amount that you earned during these years is divided by the number of months in those years to determine your average index monthly earnings. It is this calculation that will determine the amount of the benefits that you are entitled to each month.