How do you determine your onset date for Social Security disability?

How do you determine your onset date for Social Security disability?

A question that is also asked and plays a critical role in your SSD process is the date that you became disabled. At times, applicants can struggle answering this because if they have multiple impairments, chances are, they didn’t start at the same time, but simply developed over time. Picking a wrong onset date can cost you a lot of money in your benefit pay period or even hurt your chance in being accepted. Generally, your onset date will be the day that you were unable to perform daily tasks at work because of your medical condition. The onset date is also determined based on your medical records as well.

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How To Determine Your Onset Date

SSD will consider all of these factors into deciding your onset date:

1. Applicant claim: Your claim will list when you became disabled. This will be listed in the application as well as the disability report.


2. Work History: Your local Social Security office will review your claim and document the day you stopped working based on the Work Activity Report.


3. Medical evidence or relating to the disability: You should submit all medical records that are relevant to your disability so they can be reviewed by SSA. These records will show the impairments you have and the duration of time.


The onset date is the day the injury or disorder happened and caused you to not work. Based on disability ruling, the disability should expect to interfere with your work for at least a year. Based on the facts of the evidence, a medical advisor will be able to guide Social Security in dictating when your onset date should be.


It is easiest to determine your onset date if you apply for SSD shortly after your accident. If you established your disability as soon as the incident happened, the medical records will be accurate and there shouldn’t be any issues in Social Security determining your date. Those who do qualify for SSD benefits will set their onset date prior to the application, but you must be able provide evidence to back up your date. There will only be problems in determining your onset date if you wait too long to claim for disability benefits. If you need further help, please contact a disability attorney who can guide you and help fill out your application.

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