Quarters of Coverage

What does Quarters of Coverage mean?

To qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claimants must work, pay taxes and earn work credits. According to the SSA, "in 2013, you receive one credit for each $1,160 of earnings, up to the maximum of four credits per year."

Quarters of coverage refers to blocks of three months in the calendar year and is any quarter where you are working, paying taxes and are considered insured under the SSA program. Quarters of coverage were divided into three month segments. For instance, the first calendar quarter began January 1 and ended March 31, the second calendar quarter began April 1 and ended June 30, the third calendar quarter began July 1 and ended September 30, and the fourth calendar quarter began October 1 and ended December 31.

The SSA does not use currently use the term quarters of coverage. According to the SSA, beginning in 1978, employers started reporting wages on an annual, instead of quarterly basis, and the SSA started evaluating a claimant's status by referring to the number of work credits they had earned.

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