How Do You Figure Disability Payments?


Quick Answer

How much a disability benefit check is each month is calculated based upon how much the applicant earned during his lifetime. The only earnings used during the calculation are those earned by working for an employer who deducts Social Security payments from wages.

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Full Answer

Each employee is able to view his Social Security Statement online. This statement shows what the Social Security Administration has on record, such as how much has been earned and how much has been deducted for Social Security payments, for each year an employee has worked. The online Social Security benefit calculator is used to get an estimate of how much each disability benefit check is. Both the calculator and the application to receive the statement are found on the Social Security website.

If the applicant receives other government benefits, workers? compensation benefits or a pension from an employer who did not deduct Social Security payments from wages, then disability benefits may be lower than shown on the benefit calculator.

Other family members such as a spouse or children, including an ex-spouse if married more than 10 years, also qualify for benefits based upon the original recipient?s benefit, and their benefit may be as much as 50 percent of the original benefit. However, there is a limit to the amount paid per family. Generally the limit is between 150 to 180 percent of the disabled person?s benefit amount.

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