Social Security Disability Benefits

Social Security provides more than just retirement benefits; it also offers benefits for total disability. However, Social Security won’t consider you disabled if you can do just about any gainful occupation or if you can work part time. That is why people with Parkinson’s often have difficulty collecting the first time they apply.

Here are some items you should know about social security disability benefits:

  • You are eligible for benefits after five months of disability if your total disability has lasted, or is expected to last, at least 12 months.
  • Every year, Social Security by law sends you a statement of your current benefits if you were to retire or become disabled now.
  • Once you're on Social Security disability benefits for two years, you automatically become eligible for Medicare as well as eligible for the best Medicare supplement you can find, regardless of your age.
  • For more information or to find out the amount of benefits you have coming, go to or call toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 and request a paper copy of your Social Security statement that will tell you the monthly amount of benefits payable for disability, retirement and to your survivors at death.

Additional Resources

  • my Social Security: A free and secure account that provides personalized tools, whether you receive benefits or not. Use your account to request a replacement Social Security card, check the status of an application, estimate future benefits or manage the benefits you already receive.
  • The Faces and Facts of Disability: Stories about individuals on Social Security, facts about Social Security benefits and resources for people living with disabilities.   
  • Social Security Matters: The official Social Security Blog, a resource for staying up to date on Social Security tools, online services and program benefits.
  • Social Security Disability Programs: A webpage with information on the two social security disability programs, how to apply and what to do if your application is denied.

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