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What is a disability freeze?

On Behalf of | May 2, 2021 | Social Security Disability

Some people encounter a specific event in their lives that leaves them with a disability. If this is the case, the individual may apply for Social Security Disability Insurance to compensate for the sudden lack of ability to work. However, other people struggle with disabilities throughout their entire lives, and this may lead to certain periods of time where an individual cannot work due to his or her disability.

Given that the amount of money the government gives you for Social Security Disability Insurance relies heavily on how much money you make over the course of your working years, this can put certain individuals at a serious disadvantage. This is why, according to Disability Benefits Help, the “disability freeze” exists.

How does the disability freeze work?

You will need to apply to the Social Security Administration for a disability freeze. In order to be eligible, you must have “insured status” based on your work history (in other words, you must be generally qualified to receive Social Security Disability Insurance based on your work credits at the time you apply for the freeze). You must also file for disability, or be legally disabled or blind as according to the Social Security Administration.

What if I am near retirement?

If you are nearing retirement and entering a period of disability, you might be thinking about applying for early retirement instead. However, often it is better to go ahead and apply for disability benefits anyway. This can help you prevent your last years in the workforce from becoming lower-earning years. Essentially, applying for the disability benefits with a freeze can protect your retirement benefits.