How Is the SSD Income Amount Determined?

A frustrated man on a laptop.
How Much Will Be in Your Social Security Disability Check?

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is designed to give you financial help when you’ve worked to support yourself, and paid your taxes—but now you have to stop working.

It’s a lifeline when health struggles leave you worried about bills and getting by month to month.

SSDI pays monthly checks, if you’re able to prove that you can’t work because of health problems —and you can’t get retirement benefits yet.

This is a government-run insurance program to protect against unplanned health problems cutting off your ability to earn a living. By working and paying into the system, you’ve earned these benefits. This is no handout.

But how do they decide how much you’ll receive?

It’s based on your past earnings, but it’s complicated.

At the Becker Law Office in Madison, we help people in Wisconsin appeal for disability benefits when they’ve been denied by Social Security.

We can help you figure out this process, too.

Contact Us Today!

A man with glasses looking at documents.
How Social Security Calculates Disability Benefits

Every person’s Social Security Disability Income check is different, based on their work history.

This is what goes into calculating your Social Security Disability benefits:

  • The SSA uses your wage history to calculate your average monthly earnings over your working years.
  • It decides which years to put in its calculation by adding up the years between age 22 and your age when your disability began.
  • Then it removes a handful of your lowest-earning years.
  • Social Security averages your income for the remaining years.
  • It puts the number into a formula that awards lower earners a higher portion of their earnings in benefits.
  • It also caps the monthly benefits at a limit that adjusts every year. Only the highest earners would ever receive the maximum amount.
  • The SSA can reduce your payment amount to account for other public benefits you may be receiving.

Partly because of how your working years are getting shortened by severe health problems, the number of years going into your benefits calculation is less than it would be for Social Security retirement.

So disability benefits generally pay less than full retirement benefits. And either kind of benefit pays less than what you earned working.

In 2022, Social Security said the average payment for all workers with disability reached $1,358 per month.

If you were denied Social Security Disability benefits, and want to know what you can do next, you can talk to us at the Becker Law Office for a review of your claim at no charge.

Get My Free Case Consultation!

A man with glasses on the phone.
But Before Most People Get Benefits, They’re Initially Denied

One reason our disability lawyers focus on helping people appeal benefits denials is because most people get denied when they first apply for SSDI.

It’s practically a routine part of the process to apply, get denied and need to appeal.

It’s easy to make mistakes in appealing a disability benefits denial, because of all the forms, evidence that you must submit, get in on time, and get right.

You can’t get to that monthly check—and the sense of relief and stability it brings—until you go through the process first.

Becker Law Office disability attorneys work to make that process as smooth, personable and successful as possible for people who need disability benefits in Wisconsin.

To get a better idea of what you could receive from Social Security Disability, and to fight a benefits denial, get in touch with us.

You pay no attorney fee until you win benefits.

Talk to Us

Get your free consultation from one of our Social Security Disability attorneys.

    Disclaimer