Applying for Disability at Age 50 or Older
Social Security has a rigorous definition of disability. Under this definition, qualifiers have the inability to work as they once did or the inability to adjust to other work because of a medical condition. Generally because of the second qualifier, the Social Security Administration (SSA) does look to see if people can work other tasks with or without retraining. When you are over 50, the SSA recognizes that adjusting to another type of work may be difficult.
Age is one factor taken into consideration by the agency. Social Security also takes into account your functional dexterity, work background and education. In other words, your age alone is not the deciding factor. The agency looks into capabilities to perform other type of work or any limitations on working as you approach older age (50-54). The SSA examines your ability to lift, stand or walk when making a disability determination.
The following is how the capacity for work is rated:
1.For ⅓ of an eight-hour work day, applicant can lift no more than 20 pounds.
2.For ⅔ of an eight-hour work day, applicant can lift up to 10 pounds.
3.In an eight-hour day, applicant can walk or stand or both for at least six hours or more.
Education is another defining factor associated with age. If you recently completed some form of continuing education that gives you a specific skill and places you in another occupation, the SSA may not consider you for a disability. Of course, this depends on if you are mentally and physically able to perform the new type of work.
The SSA also factors in how many years of education you completed. Schooling includes trade school, college, specialized job training or vocational schools. In the guidelines followed by the administration, lack of formal education does not necessarily mean that you are uneducated or unable to qualify for other work. The SSA takes into consideration information that your level of education may be above or below your last grade of completion.
When considering your work experience as a factor, Social Security realizes that you may not have the stamina to perform tasks that you did at your last employment. The agency does look carefully at work you may still be able to perform with your disability.
Applying for disability benefits is a complicated task. Age may be a factor that can benefit you in this application. However, because of other determining factors involved, more complications can arise. Contact our offices and we will be happy to offer assistance.