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Ask Dr. Fiona Chen Your Own Question
Dr. Fiona Chen
Dr. Fiona Chen, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 482
Experience:  Former IRS Revenue Agent
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I'be been disable since 1990, when I was 38 and started

Customer Question

I'be been disable since 1990, when I was 38 and started receiving benedits in1996. It was dared back to Dec.1994. I ,also, receive Aetna ltd for 7 years before. Then, I had to sign up for my retire mentioned at the age of 55 which ran out at the time I turned 62. My question is, I's that all ss retirement benefit last and why my ltd just lasted 7 years, also.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Dr. Fiona Chen replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

Would you please share a little more information and be specific on your questions so that I may be able to fully address your question?

1) What type of retirement you signed up at age 55? Is it a private retirement pension plan?

Social security retirement cannot start before age 62. I am thinking if it is social security disability, it does not turn into regular social security retirement until age 65 or so.

2) Are you on social security supplemental income, as well?

3) How old are you now as in year of 2016?

4) Do you have any social security income or do you have any public assistance income?

Please respond. Thank you.


Fiona Chen, MPA, Ph.D., CPA, ABV, CFF, CITP

Expert:  Dr. Fiona Chen replied 1 year ago.


Dear Customer,

I realized now that you said that you were 38 in 1990. So, now in 2016, you should be age 64. Therefore, I think your question is why the disability benefit turned into social security retirement income. I will address to each phrase in your posting as follows.

1) The social security disability turns to social security retirement income when the person turns full retirement age. The amount, however, should not change.

2) In most cases, you will continue to receive disability benefits as long as you are disabled. However, there are certain circumstances that may change your continuing eligibility for disability benefits. For example,

  • your health may improve to the point where you are no longer disabled; or
  • like many people, you would like to go back to work rather than depend on your disability benefits.

The law requires that we review your case from time to time to verify that you are still disabled. We tell you if it is time to review your case, and we also keep you informed about your benefit status. You also should be aware that you are responsible for letting us know if your health improves or you go back to work.

3) A criminal conviction can cause the benefit to suspend in certain situation.

4) As to why your Aetna LTD lasted 7 years, we can only second guess. If it was an employer provided plan, it is the contract your employer obtained. Most of the times, the work long-term disability plan will push us to apply for social security disability to move us to social security disability so that we can be off the employee plan if we are no longer an employee in the company and in the insurance pool.

5) Two things can cause us to decide that you are no longer disabled and to stop your benefits.

  • Your disability benefits will stop if you work at a level we consider "substantial."

    In 2016, average earnings of $1,130 or more per month ($1,820 or more per month if you are blind) are usually considered substantial.

  • Your disability benefits also will stop if we decide that your medical condition has improved to the point that you are no longer disabled.