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Information on Programs under RSDI Benefits


RSDI stands for Retirement, Survivors and Disability Insurance. This income-maintenance program of the Federal government is considered as the largest in terms of coverage and total number of beneficiaries. In fact, approximately 96% of all the occupations in the U.S. have RSDI coverage. This would mean more than 150 million possible beneficiaries in the future.

RSDI benefits program was originally established in 1935 to provide financial assistance to retirees and to those families of deceased workers. Only then in 1956, that the Social Security Administration, which supervise the program, expanded the insurance coverage to disabled workers.

Mainly, the benefits program is being funded by the workers themselves – from the compulsory Social Security taxes being withheld from their wages.

Insurance Programs under RSDI

Retirement Benefits

Covered employees may apply for retirement benefits in three ways - online, telephone or in person at the nearest SSA office. They just have to provide original copies of the following documents stating their benefits eligibility:

  • Social Security number

  • Birth certificate

  • W-2 form or recent tax return for self-employed

  • Military discharge documents for retiring members of the armed forces

  • Birth certificate and SSN of spouse if he or she is also applying for benefits

  • Birth certificate and SSN of children if they are also applying for children’s benefits

  • Proof of U.S. citizenship or legal alien status for those who were born outside the United States

  • Bank name and account number where the benefits will be deposited directly

Disability Benefits

Disability benefits are being given to those workers who have sustained impairments included in the Social Security’s list. Thus, to qualify applicants must have incurred disabilities that impede them from exercising “Substantial Gainful Activities.” Further, such disabilities must have lasted or expected to last for at least twelve months; or anticipated to cause death.

However, an employee must first be able to earn the minimum number of work credits to be covered under this program. One may earn up to four credits per year. This means that an employee must have worked for at least a period of ten years to acquire the number. Yet, this still depends on the applicant’s age when he/she has incurred his/her disability.

Survivor Benefits

Some survivors of departed workers who were able to qualify under Social Security rules may also apply for benefits. These people include:

  • Widows or widowers

  • Divorced spouses

  • Unmarried or disabled children

  • Dependent parents

But still, a survivor’s eligibility for benefits are still subjected to various conditions such as their age, health and capacity to earn.

Employing RSDI Attorneys

Many issues involved in filing RSDI benefits can bring hardships for applicants. As well, more than two thirds of the total number of applicants gets denial from the SSA. Thus, it is very much advisable to appoint the services of RSDI attorneys in pursuing claims.

RSDI attorneys are adept with the rules and procedure in filing an application. They have the suitable skills in resolving problems and intricacies that may come along the application process. Hence, they can improve an applicant’s chances of obtaining their particular type of Social Security claim.


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