How Are Social Security Disability Payments Disbursed?

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When you have applied for Social Security disability benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA), you are likely wondering when you will receive your payments. The schedule of disability payments will depend on the type of benefits you are receiving, and in some cases, your birth date will also affect the payment schedule. If you are wondering how payment dates are selected for disability benefits, you should seek advice from a Social Security disability lawyer who can assess the specific facts of your case and can help you to determine your likely payment schedule. In the meantime, the following are factors to help you understand how Social Security disability payments are disbursed.

Know the Difference Between SSDI and SSI Benefits

Social Security disability payment dates are different for the two types of federal disability benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program benefits, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, as explains. What is the difference between the two types of benefits? It is critical to understand the key differences since these types of benefits sound alike in name but are in fact quite different in terms of eligibility.

SSDI benefits are for disabled people who have paid enough money into the SSDI program through work hours. To be eligible for SSDI benefits, you must have worked for a long enough period of time, and you must have worked a sufficient number of hours, in order to be eligible to receive this type of disability payment. It does not matter if you were a lower earner or an extremely high earner. If you meet the SSA’s definition of a disability, you may be eligible.

SSI benefits, differently, are for disabled people with lower incomes. This type of disability payment is based on a person’s income level, and the disabled person must have a low income to qualify (in addition to meeting the SSA’s definition of a disability).

SSDI Payment Schedules Are Based on Your Birthday

The payment schedule for SSDI benefits, as long as you began receiving benefits after 1997, will be based on the date of your birthday. Here is how the SSA determines the payment schedule for SSDI benefits:

  • Birthdays falling on the 1st through 10th of the month: SSDI benefits will be paid the second Wednesday each month;
  • Birthdays falling on the 11th through 20th of the month: SSDI benefits will be paid on the third Wednesday each month; and
  • Birthdays falling on the 21st through 31st of the month: SSDI benefits will be paid on the fourth Wednesday each month.

This payment schedule applies for SSDI checks and for direct deposit. For anyone who began receiving SSDI benefits prior to 1997, payments occur on the third day of the month.

SSI Payment Schedule is Paid the Same Day for Everyone

If you are receiving SSI benefits, your payments will be scheduled for the first day of the month regardless of your birth date. When the first day of the month falls on a weekend or a legal holiday, benefits will be paid the day prior.

Learn More About Social Security Disability Payment Information

If you have questions about the payment schedule or if you want help filing for SSDI benefits, you should seek advice from a disability benefits attorney.

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