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Binghamton Disability
Requirements for Over 50

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When You Turn 50, Social Security Disability’s Rules Change

You Worked Hard. When You Can’t Anymore, Shouldn’t There Be Help?

Social Security Disability benefits are a life-saver when you can’t work because your health has turned bad—but you’re not the age for retirement yet.

They provide monthly income to help you pay your bills.

More important: They give you back a sense of self-sufficiency.

But they are hard to get.

In a recent 10-year period, almost 80 percent of people who applied for disability benefits had their benefits denied.

Is there anything that could improve your chances of getting benefits?

Your age could make a difference.

If you’re over 50, Social Security may look more favorably on your claim for benefits.

That’s because the key qualification for disability benefits is that you can’t work and earn a substantial living because of your health problems. And when you’re 50 or
older, Social Security may decide you are less likely to return to work.

If you have an experienced disability lawyer who knows these special rules, you can make sure your age—and every other important part of your case—gets properly factored in to your disability claim.

Lachman & Gorton disability attorneys have helped thousands of people in Binghamton, Elmira, Rochester and across Upstate New York.

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How Your Age Plays a Bigger Role in Your SSD Claim after 50

If you’re under the age of 50, Social Security considers you a “younger individual.”

As a younger individual, you must prove your inability to perform ALL competitive employment to obtain benefits.

So not only must you be unable to continue in your most recent job. You must be unable to switch to any other job in the economy.


For Example:

You’re under 50 and you suffer an injury that doesn’t allow you to perform the physically demanding work that you had performed before.

That fact alone isn’t enough to win you Social Security Disability benefits.

Social Security will ask whether you can do work that exists anywhere in the United States. If you could do a less physical job, maybe at a desk, you won’t qualify for benefits.

They don’t consider whether you’re in a good position to get that kind of job. Or that this hypothetical job won’t provide you with the same level of pay as your prior job.


The issue, especially if you’re under 50, is your capacity to do other work.

However, if you’re between the ages of 50 and 54, they say you are “closely approaching advanced age.”

If you’re unable to perform the requirements of the work you’ve done for the last 15 years, that may be enough to qualify you for Social Security Disability benefits.

Now, they may not make you show that you can’t do any other work, either.

Want to get an idea where you stand?

Talk to our Upstate New York Social Security Disability lawyers for a free evaluation of your claim.

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The Rules Change Again at Age 55

The rules covering how your age factors into your Social Security Disability claim are called the “Medical-Vocational Guidelines.” Sometimes they’re called the “Grid Rules.”

On the grid, Social Security wisely assumes that it’s more difficult for you to perform physically demanding jobs as you age—making it more likely that you’ll when disability benefits for medical conditions that stop you from working.

•At ages 55-59, you are considered to be of “advanced age,” and the rules shift again, making it easier for you to prove your disability.

•Over 60, they say you are “closely approaching retirement age,” and it’s easier still to get benefits.

But you’ve got to make sure your age, medical records, work history, education background, financial situation and more are properly explained on your disability application.

A disability attorney can do that for you.

Let the disability lawyers at Lachman & Gorton help you pick yourself back up, focus on your own wellness and live your best possible life.

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National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives
United States District Court of Northern and Western Districts
Broome County Bar Association