Q. I just filed an SSDI appeal because my first attempt was denied. If I do get SSDI will I be dropped from SSDI and put on SSI when I turn 62 this August? SSDI benefits are higher than my SSI benefits.

A. Social Security Disability Insurance benefits are determined as if the wage earner has already reached retirement age. If approved for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), your disability benefit would remain payable until the month you reached full retirement age. At that time, your disability benefit would automatically convert to a Social Security retirement benefit. The conversion, in effect, is simply a bookkeeping adjustment at Social Security Administration headquarters. Disability benefits are paid from the Disability Insurance Trust Fund and Social Security benefits from the Old Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund.

When you reach age 62, if you wish to have benefits begin, you may apply for reduced early retirement benefits even though you are waiting for a decision on your disability benefit application. If your disability benefit claim is subsequently approved, the early retirement reduction will be removed for any month you were entitled to a disability benefit.

Social Security is not SSI. SSI is Supplemental Security Income – an assistance benefit for aged, blind or disabled individuals with little or no income or resources.