Disability for People Age 50-54
If you are age 50 or older, you may benefit from special rules which make it easier to be approved for Social Security disability benefits. Depending on your work background, if you have disabilities which limit your ability to walk and stand, you may be a good candidate for approval of disability benefits. Medical problems which affect your feet, ankles, knees, hips or neck and back (spine) are all factors which may affect your ability to walk and stand, and which may qualify you for disability benefits. Also certain illnesses, such as heart problems, lung problems, rheumatoid arthritis or diabetes, which make you feel weak or tired, may also limit your ability to walk and stand throughout a workday, and qualify you for disability benefits.
These rules are especially helpful if your past work for the last 15 years required you to walk and/or stand most of your workday. In general, the more demanding your past work, the better candidate you are for disability benefits if you are over 50. However, even if your past work was not very physically demanding, in most circumstances you will still benefit from the special rules for people over age 50.
Disability for People Age 55-59
If you are over age 55, and if you cannot do your past work because of health problems, and if you are unable to perform other more physically demanding work, you are a good candidate for disability benefits.
If you have health problems which prevent you from doing medium or heavy work (generally lifting more than 20 pounds regularly in a workday), and you are unable to do your past work, you may be an excellent candidate for disability.
Disability for People Age 60 and Over
If you are age 60 and older, the disability rules are even more favorable. If you are getting close to age 60, and are unable to work because of health problems, it is very beneficial for you to be approved for your Social Security disability benefits. Getting approved for your disability benefits will allow you to draw your full Social Security retirement benefits at your full retirement age (approximately age 66), instead of taking a reduced retirement benefit at age 62. Being able to draw your full retirement will significantly increase your retirement benefits over the remainder of your life expectancy. In other words, you can draw Social Security disability benefits until your full retirement age, and then draw your full retirement benefit for the rest of your life. This option usually increases your monthly benefits by several hundred dollars per month, for the rest of your lifetime.