Social Security Disability (“SSD”) benefits are available up to your full retirement age. When I submit an SSD application for a claimant who is over 62 years or old enough for early retirement, the Social Security Administration (the “SSA”) frequently suggests that I withdraw the SSD application and file an application for retirement benefits instead. The SSA reasons that it can take months, if not years, to get SSD benefits, while retirement benefits take relatively no time at all to receive after filing for them. I advise against withdrawing the SSD application.
I filed an SSD application for a 62 year old client last November. The SSA repeatedly argued that withdrawing the SSD application would be to my client’s benefit because he would not have to wait a long time to receive early retirement benefits. Despite rejecting the SSA’s advice, it sent a letter last March “confirming” the withdrawal of the client’s disability application, which I immediately disavowed in writing.
It took longer than usual to get the SSD application approved, eight and a half months, which may be related to the claimant’s refusal to withdraw it in favor of filing a retirement benefits application. Despite the delay, the client will ultimately be in a stronger financial position for refusing to withdraw his SSD application. SSD benefits can continue until the individual reaches full retirement age. By avoiding early retirement, the client’s eventual monthly retirement benefit will be larger.Previous Next
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