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Must I wait until my sick leave is exhausted before applying for Social Security disability…


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No. You should absolutely not wait for your sick leave to be exhausted to apply for social security disability benefits. Doing so pushes your application date out, which also pushes your eligibility date out. Some of the programs that are involved with social security, such as SSI, you’re only entitled to payment from the month in which you apply.

For SSDI, which is the disability insured portion, they can only go back for one year prior to your application date to pay you. So if you’re receiving sick pay or you’re on short term disability or even long term disability, and you wait for a period of time to apply for social security disability benefits, you may, in fact, be losing benefits.

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