Social Security Facts: Fiction of getting paid once a favorable decision is granted

Written by Lancaster and Eure

Most people believe when they file for social security disability they are entitled to their entire amount of “back pay”. However, most folks don’t understand the difference between “retroactive pay” and “back pay” and the restrictions for receiving each.

The definition of “back pay” are the bundle of benefits you are entitled to from the date that you submitted your application for disability until the date you are approved, usually by an administrative law judge. However, the payment for these benefits do not begin until the 6th full month after you have been determined to be disabled.

Whereas “retroactive pay” is defined as the benefits you are entitled to receive from the date that you were determined to be disabled or your “onset date” until the date that you applied for your benefits.  These monies are usually payable for only one year.

For example, if you became disabled on July 1, 2017, but did not file your application for benefits until August 1, 2018, and you were found by the Judge after your hearing on August 1, 2020, to have been disabled as of July 1, 2017, you would receive retroactive benefits from July 1, 2017, until July 1, 2018, and back benefits from January 1, 2019, until August 1, 2020.

If you have any questions concerning this process, please do not hesitate to contact the knowledgeable attorneys at Lancaster & Eure, PA.