Wednesday, June 15, 2022

How To Get 40 Credits For Social Security

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Working Quarters Effect On Monthly Premiums

How many credits do you need to qualify for the Social Security Benefits?

Although Medicare requires 40 credits earned for premium-free Part A coverage, people who earned fewer credits may still obtain Medicare Part A, but they must pay a monthly premium.

The monthly cost for Medicare Part A may change, but in 2021, people who paid Medicare taxes and earned between 30 and 39 quarters pay a monthly Part A premium of $259. Individuals who paid Medicare taxes for less than 30 quarters pay $471 a month.

To qualify for premium-free Medicare, an individual must also earn a certain amount during the quarters worked.

Medicare divides yearly earning into quarters to determine how many credits a person has earned.

The earnings required may change from year to year. In 2021, individuals must earn $1,470 per quarter to be eligible for premium-free Medicare.

Some people may earn enough in one quarter to qualify for all four credits. In other cases, it might take someone the entire year to make enough to be eligible for all four credits earned.

Regardless of a persons income amount, they cannot earn more than four credits in 1 year.

Earning a higher amount does not affect the amount of Medicare benefits a person receives, either. For instance, a person does not get additional Medicare Part A benefits or discounts because they earned more than the minimum 40 quarters.

Additionally, even when a person qualifies for premium-free Medicare Part A, they must pay a deductible for certain services.

The numbers of quarters required include:

Number Of Credits Needed For Disability Benefits

To be eligible for disability benefits, you must meet a recent work test and a duration work test.

The number of credits necessary to meet the recent work test depends on your age. The rules are as follows:

  • Before age 24 – You may qualify if you have 6 credits earned in the 3-year period ending when your disability starts.
  • Age 24 to 31 In general, you may qualify if you have credit for working half the time between age 21 and the time you become disabled. As a general example, if you become disabled at age 27, you would need 3 years of work out of the past 6 years .
  • Age 31 or older – In general, you must have at least 20 credits in the 10-year period immediately before you become disabled.

The following table shows how many years of work credits you need to meet the duration of work test based on your age when your disability began. For the duration of work test, your work does not have to fall within a certain period. The table only provides an estimate of how many work credits you need. It does not cover all situations. If you are statutorily blind, you must only meet the duration of work test. When statutory blindness is involved, there is not a recent work test requirement.

NOTE: This table is an estimate only and does not cover all situations

If you become disabled…
9.5 years

What If You Do Not Have The Required Work Credits

You will not be able to qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits if you do not have the proper work history. It is possible that you have never been able to work due to your disability. For someone who does not have the necessary work history to qualify for disability benefits, you might be able to qualify for Supplemental Security Income. SSI is a government benefit that is available for those who have a disability, limited financial resources, and dont have the required work history for SSDI. SSI is a needs-based program, however, and you will need to meet the SSA’s household income and asset restrictions before going further in the benefits application process.

The Social Security Disability SSDI program, which does require work credits, is not a needs-based program. No matter how much your household income is,;you can qualify for Social Security Disability SSDI benefits if you meet the SSA’s disability criteria and have enough work credits to qualify for SSDI benefits from the Social Security Administration.

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Eligibility Based On A Spouses Work History

A married person who has not worked at all or has not worked enough to earn credits towards free Medicare might gain premium-free Part A through their spouses employment.

To qualify based on a spouses employment, an individual must be aged at least 65, and their spouse must be aged 62 or older and have earned enough Medicare credits to qualify for free Medicare Part A for themselves.

Factors That Affect How Much You’ll Get In Retirement

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Most retirees rely on Social Security. One in four gets 90% of their retirement income from the program. About half rely on it for 50% of their income.

Although Social Security is only one part of a secure retirement plan, it’s helpful to get a rough idea of how much you can expect. If you’re eligible for Social Security, your monthly benefit is based on two factors:

  • How much money you earned during your working career
  • The age you choose to start getting payments

Let’s look at how each of these affects your future Social Security income.

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How Can I Check My Social Security Credits

The best way to check Social Security credits is to go to the main Social Security website at The SSA keeps a constant record of both your work credits and your earnings. You will have to create a my Social Security account before you can view your records. You can also simply call and inquire by phone , or even arrange an appointment with a branch in person at a local Social Security office.

Benefits For A Disabled Child

A child under age 18 may be disabled, but we don’t need to consider the child’s disability when deciding if he or she qualifies for benefits as a dependent. The child’s benefits normally stop at age 18 unless he or she is a full-time student in an elementary or high school or is disabled.

Children who were receiving benefits as a minor child on a parents Social Security record may be eligible to continue receiving benefits on that parents record upon reaching age 18 if they are disabled.

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Do Social Security Credits Have Anything To Do With Medicare

You might think that Medicare and Social Security have little to do with each other. After all, Medicare takes care of healthcare coverage for older Americans and others, while Social Security simply provides financial support in the form of regular benefit payments.

However, the Medicare program also has eligibility requirements and in one case, it looks to the Social Security credit system in order to determine how part of its own healthcare program will work.

The issue with Medicare and Social Security credits involves Part A coverage for hospital and inpatient medical costs. For most Medicare participants, Part A coverage comes without any monthly premium. The idea is that the Medicare payroll taxes that most workers pay over the course of their careers go toward covering the cost of their hospital coverage when they retire, and so charging an additional premium isn’t necessary.

However, it takes time for the payroll taxes that get collected from your paycheck to add up to enough to be a meaningful figure. That’s why the program requires a minimum work history to let you avoid paying monthly premiums for Part A coverage.

Specifically, if you’ve earned 40 or more Social Security credits, then you won’t have to worry about monthly premiums for Part A coverage. Medicare will pick up all the costs itself, leaving you just to pay any deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance amounts on your own.

Can You Get Social Security Disability If You Dont Have Enough Work Credits

Social Security Credits: How Many Do You Really Need?

Home » Frequently Asked Questions » Can You Get Social Security Disability If You Dont Have Enough Work Credits?

You cannot get Social Security Disability Insurance benefits on your own work record if you dont have enough work credits, but you might qualify for Supplemental Security Income payments. While the SSDI program requires applicants to meet a work credits requirement, the SSI program does not.

If your application is approved for SSI benefits, you could receive monthly cash payments, Medicaid, and back pay dating from the month you originally applied. Our firm assists clients who are seeking disability benefits in Rutherfordton and other communities in North Carolina. We take calls day or night, so you do not have to wait to reach out for help.

  • An overview of work credit requirements for SSDI
  • How you earn work credits
  • Why SSDI requires work credits
  • How to qualify for SSI benefits
  • How a lawyer with our firm can help you apply for disability benefits
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    Why Ssdi Requires Work Credits

    As the acronym indicates, SSDI is an insurance program. You pay the premiums of this program through the Social Security deductions that your boss takes out of your paycheck and sends to the government on your behalf. That money helps to fund the monthly Social Security disability and retirement checks that people receive.

    On the other hand, the source of funding for SSI benefits is general revenues, like income taxes and additional money that the government collects. Because SSI does not use payroll deductions for Social Security taxes as its source of funding, you do not have to pay into the system and accumulate work credits to be eligible for these benefits.

    For a legal consultation, call

    Earning Social Security Credits Are Based On Your Total Annual Income

    The number of credits you earn in a year depends upon how much money you made, not how many months you worked. For instance, if you work for two months in 2015 and make $2,440, you will have earned two credits . If you work six months and make $2,800, you will also have earned two credits. To earn three credits, you would have to earn at least $3,660 . To earn four credits for the year, you would have to make at least $4,880, the income required to earn the maximum number.

    If you earn $2,440 in 2015, you will earn two credits. If you earn $3,050, you will still earn only two credits, not two and one-half credits, since credits are awarded in whole units only

    You’re never too old to earn credits. Unless you’ve already reached the maximum credits possible , any income you have that is subject to Social Security taxes can earn you more credits, even if you are already old enough to retire.

    Once you earn the credits, theyÃâ°’re yours to keep, even if you never work again.

    The size of your benefit check has nothing to do with how many credits you have earned. They only determine what type of benefits for which you might be eligible.

    • Earn 40 credits or
    • Earn at least one credit for each year elapsing after 1950 and before the year in which you reach age 62, die, or become disabled , and earn at least six total credits

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    Does All Work Earn Social Security Credits

    If you work at a job that withholds money from your paycheck to pay for Social Security payroll taxes, then the wages and salary you earn there counts toward getting credits. Similarly, those who pay self-employment taxes on their income from self-employment also earn Social Security credits.

    The most common case in which work doesn’t earn Social Security credits involves public sector employment for a state or local government entity. Many workers for state and local government employers participate in their own pension plan and have money withheld to finance that pension rather than Social Security benefits. As a result, earnings from those jobs don’t count toward getting credits.

    Whats Required To Get Social Security Credits

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    Social security credits are earned over ones lifetime as they work and pay into the system through their Social Security taxes. As of 2020, the minimum threshold to earn a credit is $1410, with a maximum of four credits that can be earned per year. Even someone who earns as little as $5,640 in a year would still be able to earn their four credits.;

    For most, this feat is easily achievable. But for othersdue to mitigating circumstancesit is possible to fall short, and end up with not enough credits for Social Security retirement. If you are near retirement age and find yourself still under the Social Security 40 credits minimum, it can feel very frustrating.

    Some people wonder, Can I buy Social Security credits? The answer is no. Social Security credits cannot be bought. They must be earned by working a qualified wage throughout your work history.;

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    Myth #: Your Benefits Are Based Only On Wages You’ve Earned Before Age 65

    How your Social Security benefit is calculated can seem mysterious. However, it’s important to know a few essential facts to aid your claiming strategy. You can use the tools on to do the calculations.

    • Your benefit is calculated based on your highest 35 years of earnings; they don’t have to be consecutive years or before age 65.
    • If you work past age 65, those earning years will be included, so long as they are high enough to be part of your highest 35 years.
    • Even working part-time after turning 65 may be part of your highest 35 years of earnings.
    • To be eligible for Social Security, you must have a minimum of 10 years of covered employment , which equates to 40 credits in the Social Security system.
    • If you don’t have 35 years with earnings, zeros will be included in the calculation.

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    Check The Social Security Administration’s Math

    Your statement includes a record of the earnings on which you’ve paid taxes and an estimate of the benefits you will receive at various retirement ages: 62, 67, and 70. It is always wise for you to check the SSA’s numbers. Don’t be surprised if you uncover an error. Some government-watchers estimate that the SSA makes mistakes on at least 3% of the total official earnings records it keeps.

    When you check your record, make sure that the Social Security number noted on your earnings statement is your own, and make sure the earned income amounts listed on the agency’s records mesh with your own records of earnings as listed on your income tax forms or pay stubs.

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    That’s it. Non-citizens, felons, and spouses who didn’t work can all qualify for Social Security as long as they meet those three requirements. The third is a rare category but, for example, it would disqualify someone from getting survivor’s benefits after killing their spouse or someone who gained their work credits fraudulently.

    The third category also means those undocumented immigrants, even though many pay Social Security taxes, cannot collect benefits unless they are considered a “qualified alien.”

    How To Get A Copy Of Your Social Security Statement

    How Many Work Credits Do I Need To Receive Social Security Benefits?

    The SSA mails out Social Security Statements to follks age 25 and over before their birthdays during their 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, and 60 years. For those age 60 until retirement, the SSA will send out statements every year. You can also go online to get a copy of your statement or view it online. Go to and open an account with Social Security to view your statement.

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    Social Security Survivor Benefits

    Even after you die, Social Security can continue to pay benefits to your spouse and childrenand even to your parents, if you were supporting them. For your family to receive survivor benefits, youll need to have earned at least six Social Security credits in the three years before your death.

    Along with a one-time lump-sum payment of $255, your surviving spouse and children may each qualify for 71.5% to 100% of your Social Security payments, up to a maximum of 150% to 180% of your benefit rate. Eligibility for survivor benefits requires that:

    • Surviving spouse is at least 60 or older
    • Surviving spouse is 50 or older and disabled
    • Surviving spouse is caring for your child who is younger than 16 or disabled
    • Children who are younger than 18
    • Children younger than 19 and enrolled in elementary or secondary school
    • Children older than 18 who are severely disabled
    • Your surviving parents if they were dependent on you for at least half of their support

    Other Ways You Can Apply

    Apply With Your Local Office

    You can do most of your business with Social Security online. If you cannot use these online services, your local Social Security office can help you apply. Although our offices are closed to the public, employees from those offices are assisting people by telephone. You can find the phone number for your local office by using our Office Locator and looking under Social Security Office Information. The toll-free Office number is your local office.

    Apply By Phone

    If You Do Not Live in the U.S. Or One of Its Territories

    Contact the if you live outside the U.S. or a U.S. territory and wish to apply for retirement benefits.

    Mailing Your Documents

    If you mail any documents to us, you must include the Social Security number so that we can match them with the correct application. Do not write anything on the original documents. Please write the Social Security number on a separate sheet of paper and include it in the mailing envelope along with the documents.

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