Social Security Update: Reducing Work History

Social Security announced that as of June 22, 2024 anyone applying for Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income only needs to provide work history for the past 5 years. This means Social Security reduced the past work period from 15 years to 5 years. You can read the full press release here. 

This change should help reduce the time it takes to complete the application. Applicants will now be able to focus on their recent work instead of their long past work. This should also help reduce the time it takes Social Security to review a claim. 

Impact for Huntington’s Disease Community

Hopefully, this change will help the Huntington’s Disease community. It reduces the information needed to complete the Social Security disability application and some of the stress of the process. Many individuals struggle to remember their past work and this change helps ease that burden. 

Before starting the Social Security disability process, gather your resume and past job descriptions to help make the process easier. You can read more about what information you will need in in HDSA’s SSDI Application Tips. And you can learn how to complete the Work History Report in the webinar here.

While this rule reduces the amount of past work information needed for a Social Security disability application, it does not change any other Social Security standard. This means you are still required to submit proof of your HD diagnosis and medical records showing your HD symptoms and limitations. In addition, you need to be as detailed and thorough as possible when completing the application.

Overall, the goal of this change is to streamline the Social Security disability application process. BUT, it does not change the burden of proof of disability: to show you cannot work because of your HD symptoms and limitations.

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