Securing Social Security Disability Insurance can be an important financial lifeline, but the approval process can be lengthy.
As you await a decision on your application, you need to navigate your finances wisely.
Assess your budget
The federal government collected $143 billion from Social Security payroll taxes in 2022 to pay for SSDI benefits, but you do not have access to any of this money until your application gets approved. Therefore, begin by scrutinizing your current budget. Identify essential expenses, such as housing, utilities and groceries. Categorize discretionary spending and pinpoint areas where you can cut back.
Prioritize your bills
Prioritizing your bills ensures that important payments get made first. Focus on housing, utilities and medical expenses. Communicate with your creditors if necessary. You may find that many are willing to work with individuals facing financial challenges.
Explore assistance programs
Investigate federal, state and local assistance programs that can provide temporary relief. Understanding your eligibility for these programs can provide additional financial relief and ease the financial strain during the waiting period.
Learn about your insurance coverage
Review your health insurance coverage to understand any potential gaps. Maintaining comprehensive health coverage is important, especially during a period of health-related uncertainty. Be aware of copayments, deductibles and coverage limits.
Stay organized with documentation
Keep meticulous records of your financial situation, medical condition and any communications with relevant entities. This documentation can support your case if you need to appeal an SSDI decision or provide evidence of your financial challenges.
Managing your finances while awaiting SSDI approval requires diligence and strategic planning. With proper management, you may actually build your emergency fund rather than draining it.