SSDI California

by Calvin on September 12, 2022

While the Social Security Administration (SSA) primarily focuses on providing Social Security benefits to the people, they also offer specialized help to a certain demographic. Their services go beyond Social Security retirement benefits and their supplemental nutrition assistance program. For one, people with disability are given special Supplemental Security Income (SSI benefits). 

Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) can provide supplemental security income for those facing pressing disabilities. While it largely depends on the type of disability, people with such conditions may require assistance or even specialized care to function with daily activities. Given this reality, SSDI benefits could be helpful.

While federal laws and institutions govern benefits, the local Social Security office is primarily in charge of handling such human services in their vicinity. Because they are local branches, their coverage and procedures may have slight or significant differences. 

If you are from California, here is what you need to know about Social Security disability insurance in California.

What SSDI benefits does California offer?

The Employment Development Department of California offers various state disability insurance claims. More specifically, State Disability Insurance (SDI) covers many kinds of DI (Disability Insurance), and PFL (Paid Family Leave) claims.

However, it is important to note that these two policies offer a payment benefit, not job protection. They serve as good supplemental security income. 

Here are some of the disability claims under the Employment Development Department that a person with a disability can avail of in California. 

  • Disability Insurance (DI)
  • Paid Family Leave (PFL)
  • PFL Care
  • Pregnancy
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • DI and PFL Voluntary Plan

The Social Security Administration, on the other hand, also offers concrete Social Security Disability Insurance benefits to eligible persons on a federal level. The list of Social Security disability benefits is not explicitly listed, but one type of benefit concretely pertains to health. 

What qualifies me for disability in California?

It is very easy for people to claim disability, but certain standards are set to prevent excess payment and false records. 

For example, for claims under the Employment Development Department of California, there are certain eligibility requirements that individuals need to meet. For one, a person may be eligible for DI when the person cannot work and is losing wage payment due to an injury, illness, or pregnancy unrelated to work. 

On the other hand, the SSA has a standardized process for identifying whether a person’s condition passes the criteria. In this assessment process, the SSA will assess the application to check if the person meets the minimum requirements for availing of disability benefits. During the entire process, they may look into the following. 

  • Work tenure 
  • Current or recent work activities 
  • Medical information and evidence from hospitals, doctors, clinics, and other institutions.

When checking medical information, doctors may assess and ask about the presenting condition, when the condition started, how the condition has been affecting daily activity, test results, and treatments. 

The process is quite thorough. Hence, while the procedures are ongoing, the state agency staff may need to source more information about the person’s medical condition before coming up with a conclusion. When necessary, a further special examination may be required.

How do I apply for SSDI in California?

To avail of the benefits under the Employment Development Department of California, you can apply by filing a claim via email or online. You must first register to make an account through the Benefits Program Online. Having this account is necessary to file and manage the claim. 

As for SSDI government benefits under the SSA, there is also an SSDI application process to follow. Applications can be completed online or through a call for those who have difficulty doing it online. 

Other tips to keep in mind

  • There are several factors that the SSA looks into when determining whether a person qualifies for disability benefits. These factors may include employment, the severity of the condition, the ability to perform previous work, and whether the condition meets the SSA’s listings. 
  • You can file an appeal if you disagree with the conclusion. The SSA gives room for requests for reconsideration. 
  • Family members may also qualify for benefits. The eligibility of family members is also subject to scrutiny. The Social Security Administration also provides guidelines and criteria. 
  • Your current government benefits may affect your SSDI payment benefits. Such prior benefits impact the actual amount of the SSDI payment. 

How Trajector can help

The process of applying and filing claims for benefits is quite rough. There is also no guarantee that your application will get approved. It is for this reason that Trajector is here to help you. 

We at Trajector are familiar with the ins and outs of disability claims in California and across different states. Let us help you with your case.