Ortega Disability Group

How Does My Age Affect My Disability Benefits?

As your Social Security disability attorney in Oakland, we are experienced in the many ins and outs that can affect your ability to receive disability benefits. The Social Security Administration considers many different factors when establishing an individual’s right to claim SSI or SSDI benefits, and age can often play a significant role in determining your benefits. If you’re wondering how your age might affect your disability benefits, we are happy to help you navigate through the process.

Residual Functional Capacity and The Grid

To ensure a fair and uniform process for disability claims, Social Security sets guidelines to aid disability examiners in their process, known as “The Grid.” The Grid takes factors other than medical information, such as age, skills, education, and residual functional capacity, into account when making your disability decision. Your residual functional capacity (RFC) is an assessment of what you are capable of doing and what you are too limited to do.

How the Grid Affects Your Benefits

Social Security has set up age categories to help with the disability decision process. Individuals between the ages of 18 and 44 are considered young individuals, 45-49 year olds are younger individuals, 50-54 year olds are considered to be closely approaching advanced age, and those who are 55 years old or over are considered to be of advanced age. Individuals between 60 and 65 are considered to be closely approaching retirement age.

As your social security disability attorney in Oakland, we understand how Social Security uses a combination of these age groups, along with your RFC, your skillset, and your education to establish your disability. As a general rule of thumb, the older you are, the less likely Social Security is going to expect you to train for a new job.

Children’s Claims

Lastly, age can be a significant factor in evaluating children’s SSI disability claims because children under the age of 18 who file for SSI are evaluated on the basis of whether or not they have a severe mental or physical impairment. The impairment does not have to result in an inability to work, but rather can be a “marked and severe limitation.” For those under the age of 18, Social Security uses an entirely different set of criteria when making disability decisions.

Contact Your Social Security Disability Attorney in Oakland

For more information about how your age might affect your Disability Benefits, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today.

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