Retirement, Survivors and Disability Insurance (RSDI) (Archive)

Retirement Survivors Disability Insurance (RSDI) is a program operated by the Social Security Administration (SSA). It provides a monthly income to certain people based on payroll contributions made via Social Security taxes.

Who Qualifies for RSDI.

RSDI Payment Amount.

RSDI and MN Health Care Programs.

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Who Qualifies for RSDI

RSDI payments are made to any of the following:

l  Retired people.


Herb retires at age 65. He and his employer made social security payments on his behalf for 40 years. His 66-year-old wife did not work outside the home.

SSA Action:

Both Herb and his wife receive RSDI retirement benefits based on Herb's earnings and social security contributions.

l  People who become disabled for an extended period.

Note:  The disability part of the RSDI program is also known as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI or SSD).


Laura became unable to work due to a disability 12 months ago. She and her employer made social security payments on her behalf for 15 years.

SSA Action:

Laura receives RSDI disability payments based on her earnings.

l  Dependents of a wage earner who has died.


Anna died after she and her employer made social security payments on her behalf for 10 years. She is survived by her husband, Ken and her three children. Ken is employed fulltime.

SSA Action:

Ken will receive RSDI survivor's benefits for their three children based on Anna’s earnings. Ken is not eligible for survivor benefits.

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RSDI Payment Amount

The amount of the RSDI payment is based on the earnings and payroll taxes of the qualifying person.

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RSDI and Minnesota Health Care Programs

For information on how RSDI is treated as income, see the following for more information:


Categories of Income.

RSDI and SSI Income.

Lump Sum Income.

RSDI can be excluded as income for certain people who are eligible for MA. See the following for more information:

Income Calculation.

Disabled Widow and Widower Disregard.

Widow and Widower Disregard.

Pickle Disregard.

Disabled Adult Child Disregard.

RSDI COLA Disregard.

Clients who meet certain conditions must be referred to apply for SSA benefits. See Referrals to Social Security to determine who must be referred and the steps in the referral process.

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