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Disability is different when the condition is short-term

As many residents of Florida and elsewhere understand, Social Security Disability benefits exist to cover people’s living expenses if they become disabled and have worked long enough to contribute to the Social Security program. However, what if one becomes disabled and unable to work for a short time and expects to recover? Does Social Security make allowances for these situations?

As the Social Security Administration explains, disabilities that are eligible for benefits must be expected to last at least one year or result in death, as well as completely render someone unable to work. Therefore, short-term disabilities do not fall under the SSA’s jurisdiction.

This does not mean that temporarily disabled people are without recourse. According to FindLaw, individuals may purchase short-term disability insurance either privately or ask their employers if they offer such coverage through their insurance plans. The following ideas may also help people cope with a short-term disability:

  • Apply for workers’ compensation if the injury or illness was job-related.
  • Put money into an emergency savings account.
  • Keep a credit card for emergency use only.
  • See if a family member can offer housing or financial assistance until the person is able to work again.

Unfortunately, most people in the United States will experience a disability, either for the short term or for life, at some point in their lifetime. It may be wise to consider this possibility and make plans ahead of time, so one’s quality of life is not seriously impacted by a temporary or permanent disability.

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