Contact Us for a Consultation 410-415-3617


Social Security Disability Applicants Now Only Need To Provide 5 Years of Work History

Posted by Jerry Williams | Jun 27, 2024

On June 26, 2024, the Social Security Administration announced changes made to the disability benefits application. Previously the SSA required disability benefit applicants to provide past relevant work (PRW) which was work performed in the past 15 years. On Wednesday SSA changed PRW to 5 years of work history. SSA also will no longer consider past work that started and stopped in fewer than 30 calendar days. 

It is believed that this new rule will simplify Step 4 of the disability procedures, which outlines whether a claimant applying for disability benefits can perform any of their PRW. 

Commissioner Martin O'Malley stated that the new rule "will lessen the burden and time our applicants face when filling out information about their work history and make it easier for them to focus on the most current and relevant details about their past work."

Effective June 22, 2024, the new rule for determining past relevant work, SSA will review only five years of past work. 

The rule is said to be one of several updates SSA is publishing to improve the disability program. Applicants applying for disability benefits often wait years for their applications to slowly wind through the SSA application system, including an often difficult to navigate appeals process before having the first hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. SSA publishes the average wait time from the time period of requesting an appeal before an Administrative Law Judge here. Average wait times vary amongst the office of where the hearing will be held. As of the date of this posting, the average wait time for Site T21 Baltimore hearing office is 10 months and Site T0T NHC-Baltimore hearing office is 16 months, and Washington, DC hearing office is 9 months.

This announcement has now been one of two significant changes over a few days, including the most recent decision to remove 114 jobs from the DOT on June 24, 2024.

About the Author

Jerry Williams

Attorney Jerry “Jay” Williams, III cares about his clients. For over ten years, Jay has represented individuals in and out of court across the state of Maryland and Washington, D.C., during difficult times for clients. Jay has aggressively fought for his clients and pursued financial awards for p...