What Are the Requirements for Filing for Social Security Benefits?

To qualify for Social Security disability benefits, a person must have worked a job covered by Social Security and meet the definition of a disability, explains the Social Security Administration. To qualify for retirement benefits, applicants must be at least 61 years and 9 months old to apply.

Additionally, requirements for retirement benefits specify that the applicant must not already receive Social Security benefits and that the applicant not have already applied previously.

To qualify for Social Security child’s insurance benefits, the child must have a disabled or retired parent entitled to receive Social Security benefits. The child may also qualify if he has a parent who died after having worked long enough in a job in which the parent paid Social Security taxes. The child must also be unmarried, younger than the age of 18, or between 18 and 19 years old if the child is a full-time student in no higher than the 12th grade. The child can be older than 18 if disabled and if the disability started before the age of 22.

Qualifications for disabled widow or widower’s insurance require the applicant be at least age 50, but not yet 60. Additionally, the applicant must have been married to the deceased spouse for not less than 9 months prior to the day the spouse died.