If you are no longer able to work because of illness or injury, your ability to collect Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) will likely hinge on three things:
- Your age
- Your physical or mental condition
- The transferability of your skills
- If you will be disabled for 12 months or more
Because the Social Security Administration deals with millions of people and they all have individual needs, they work to quantify each person’s situation.
Age, condition, skills
SSDI officials take into account your age and the fact that, in general, your ability to learn new skills declines as you get older. An applicant who is 40 years old is treated differently than one who is 63.
Your physical or mental condition is defined by your doctor. If you have the ability to perform a job – even if it’s not in your career or even if it’s menial – then you likely don’t need SSDI. If your physical or mental condition is such that you can’t work for longer than 12 months or you might die soon, then you may qualify.
The ability to transfer skills is based on your previous jobs. If the skills you learned can be transferred to another job, then you can continue to work.
Skills associated with these jobs are likely to transfer to other jobs:
- Auto repair
- Heavy equipment operator
Skills associated with most jobs in mining, agriculture, fishing and being a nurse’s aide are not skilled jobs.
Nor is trucking. Basic driving is not a skill, according to SSDI.
Every applicant’s situation is different and unique. However, if you are a truck driver who can no longer work, you may have the ability to collect from SSDI.
Applying for SSDI is extremely complicated. Talk to an experienced, qualified attorney to get the best answers to your questions.