However, there are special circumstances under which a person can begin to review Social Security benefits prior to age 62:
- If you are disabled to the point you can no longer attain employment.
- You are claiming Social Security benefits for a deceased spouse.
- Let’s begin by looking at how a disabled person could qualify for early Social Security benefits.
Social Security Disability Insurance
The Social Security program allows people who have suffered a disability that impacts their ability to work to collect Social Security benefits before the age of 62. In fact, there is no minimum age to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance, and the 10 years of paying into the system is not a requirement.
However, you must be able to prove that your medical condition meets the standards set by the Social Security Administration; and you must be able to prove that your disability prevents you from working today and into the future.
According to the ssa.gov website, disability is defined as “the inability to engage in any substantial gainful actively by reason of any medically determinable physical; or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death; or which has lasted or can be expected to last for as continue spider of not less than 12 months.”
This is a program designed to protect people who have experienced a physical or mental event that made them incapable of performing a job for which they were paid previously or could be paid for going forward.
More About This Security
These payments from Social Security are NOT a temporary support payment plan such as a workman’s compensation. It is taking funds from a person’s Social Security benefits that they would have received if they continued to work up until they qualified for benefits at age 62 or thereafter.
Social Security Disability Insurance is for those people who are severely impaired; and are proven unlikely to return to the workforce at any time in the future.
Because disabled people are asking for benefits before they would otherwise be eligible, their payments are much less than they would receive at age 62 or beyond. In 2019, the SSA reported that the average monthly benefit paid to the approximately nine million disabled persons that year was $1,234, which is $14,808 annually.
Proving that you are disabled and qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance is a lengthy process that is well-regulated. Initial determinations are made by security field offices and require medical records and conversations with physicians or mental health professionals.
According to the SSA, it received more than three million initial or reconsideration claims in 2016, and there was an average 355-day waiting period for initial hearings on claims; which means that adjudication of such claims could take more than a year.
Will My Condition Improve?
There is one reason to think long and hard before applying for security disability insurance before age 62.
Your Social Security monthly benefit is set by the age at which you first apply, and the younger you are, the lower the benefit will be. If there is a chance you will be able to return to gainful employment in the future; you might be better served to hold off on your initial claim, eventually add to your security account by paying employment taxes; and take Social Security when you qualify at age 62.
End Result on How to Get Social Security
Applying for Social Security disability benefits is a time-consuming and likely frustrating process, but the money is available to those who qualify. You are not alone in filing for these benefits, and it is likely there are tutorials online to help.
Deceased Spouse Benefits
A widow or widower of a spouse who would have qualified for Social Security benefits can receive full benefits at the spouse’s full retirement age as early as age 60. The widow or widower can then switch to their own Social Security benefits when they reach age 62; or later if they choose to do so.
A disabled widow or widower can receive the security benefits of their spouse as early as age 50; if the disability occurred before their spouse passed, or within seven years of the spouse’s passing.
Choosing to remarry does not impact a widow or widower’s qualification for survivor benefits from their previous marriage.
Note: You cannot apply for survivor benefits as a widow, widower or divorced surviving spouse online. Contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 to discuss the particulars of your citation. In most cases, a funeral home director will contact Social Security to inform it of the passing of a beneficiary.
The Social Security Administration is one of the most responsive departments in the United States government. Any special issues or concerns you might have about accessing security benefits early due to disability; or death of a beneficiary can be answered by accessing the “Security” website at www.ssa.gov.
We hope you must have learned a lot after going through this guide on how to get social security before 62.