Charlotte disability attorneys explain important dates affecting the payment and amount of Social Security disability benefits

For more on the process of disability benefits, call a Charlotte disability attorney at Bridgman Law Offices at (704)815-6055 today!

As Charlotte disability attorneys, we handle all phases of the Social Security disability application and appeals process. At some point during this process, most clients wonder, "If I am awarded benefits, how far back will my benefits go?" Like many aspects of Social Security disability, the answer to this question is deceptively simple: You are entitled to receive benefits back to the date of your application and for up to 12 months prior to that date. To understand what this means, you need to understand a handful of important dates and terms:

Application date: This is the date you complete your application for Social Security disability benefits.

Onset date: The onset date of disability is the first day you are "disabled," as that term is defined in the Social Security Act and the regulations. Factors relevant to the determination of your onset date include (a) your claim as to when you became disabled; (b) your work history; and (c) the medical evidence in your case. These factors typically are evaluated together to arrive at the onset date. However, factors (a) and (b) are given significant consideration only if they are consistent with the severity of your condition, as demonstrated by the medical evidence

Waiting period: You are not entitled to receive any benefits for the first 5 full calendar months after your onset date. The purpose of the waiting period is to ensure that Social Security pays benefits only to persons with long-term disabilities. Because only full months are counted, the actual waiting period is nearly always longer than five months.

Taking all these factors into consideration, your benefits begin either 12 months prior to your application date or five full months after your onset date, whichever is later.