Once a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits is approved, how much does Social Security Disability pay per month? Successful claimants want to know the amount of money they will receive each month. This amount will be different for everyone. That’s because the amount you receive is based on your average lifetime earnings before your disability began.
Social Security Disability payments are not based on how severe your disability / medical condition is or how much income you have today. Instead, the calculation takes into effect your average earnings before your disability made working impossible.
On average, most SSDI recipients receive between $800 and $1,800 per month. The average for 2020 is $1,258. Claimants receive reduced payments if they are also receiving certain disability payments from other sources.
Calculating Your Social Security Disability Payment
The amount of money you will receive from Social Security Disability pay on a monthly basis is unique for every individual. This is because the Social Security Administration (SSA) uses a complex formula to calculate benefits for each person.
However, you cannot receive more than the maximum benefit. That amount is $3,011 in 2020.
Your retirement and disability benefits are based on the income on which you’ve paid Social Security taxes. This is called “covered earnings.” Social Security averages those covered earnings to arrive at what is called your average indexed monthly earnings (AIME).
Next, Social Security uses a formula applied to your AIME to calculate your primary insurance amount (PIA). PIA is the base figure the SSA uses in setting your benefit amount.
To see your entire covered earnings history, you can check your annual Social Security Statement. You can check your statement online at https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount. If you want to enter information yourself rather than rely on your earnings record, you can use SSA’s online benefits calculator at https://www.ssa.gov/planners/calculators.
You can also call your local Social Security office and a field representative will be able to help you estimate what your benefits will be.
Reducing Your Payment by Other Disability Payments
If you receive disability benefits from a private long-term disability insurance policy, these benefits will not affect your SSDI benefits. However, if you receive government-regulated disability benefits, such as workers’ comp benefits or temporary state disability benefits, they can affect your SSDI benefits.
Individuals receiving more than 80% of the average amount they earned previously along with other disability benefits will have their benefits reduced. However, SSI and VA benefits will not reduce your SSDI benefit.
Social Security Backpay
The amount of Social Security Backpay you receive is dependent on your SSDI monthly amount. Your application date and the date your disability started determines how many months of back payment you get. The date your disability started is called the onset date.
If you’re working with a disability lawyer, they will help you determine how much your monthly disability payment will be. They can also help answer additional questions you may have.