There are times when working in Pennsylvania is no longer an option due to an injury. Applying for Social Security disability can be a daunting task that may not help you receive the necessary funds to live. There is a difference between Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income though the application process is similar.

The main difference according to the Social Security Administration is how the programs receive financing. Taxpayers fund the SSI program through annual tax dollars. The SSI program is needs-based while Social Security disability payments come out disability insurance paid by employment taxes. Survivors and retirement Social Security payments receive funding from employment taxes as well.

The worker’s earnings determine the payments received for Social Security benefits. The time spent working can increase the available disability payments paid to workers. For those with limited resources, they may be eligible for the SSI program which is not dependent on how long they worked.

Benefits.gov lists the benefits the disabled can receive if they qualify for Social Security disability. The person applying must meet the criteria for a disability outlined by the Social Security Administration. If a person has a full-time medical disability keeping them from working yet are not retirement age, they may qualify for benefits.

The SSA estimates that there is a 25% chance a 20-year-old worker may end up disabled before the age of retirement. In addition, a disabled worker’s family members may qualify to receive benefits in certain situations. Disabled workers must provide medical documentation to support the medical condition keeping them from working.