The Social Security Disability (SSDI) system was put into place in order to ensure that injured workers are able to receive the benefits they need while they heal from their injuries. It’s important to note, however, that receiving SSDI benefits doesn’t mean that they will be completely unable to Work if they want to remain eligible for benefits. Read on to find out more about the rules for working while receiving benefits below.
The rules governing SSDI allow for workers to enroll in a Trial Work Period for nine months. These nine months do not need to be consecutive, and earnings can exceed $850 during this period without affecting Eligibility. Months in which workers are self-employed for less than 80 hours or earn less than $850 will not be counted against this maximum of nine months.
Substantial Gainful Activity Test
Once this period has ended, earnings will be assessed and measured against the SSA’s substantial gainful activity threshold. This places a limit on working and earning. If earnings exceed $1,180 for non-blind people or $1,970 for those who are blind, workers will no longer be considered disabled.
It’s important to note that additional rules are in place for business owners and volunteer activities. There are also rules in place governing the situations in which workers earn money even if their earnings do not exceed the maximum threshold.
Once the nine-month trial period has ended, those who are still working will find that their benefits are shifted to an extended 36-month period. The SSA will perform a monthly check to ensure that those receiving benefits are still eligible each month for the duration of this extended period.
The system for approving and denying SSDI and Supplemental Security Income applications can be quite complex, so it’s often necessary for workers to enlist some legal help. Anyone who is experiencing confusion regarding working and earning income during his or her disability period or has had a valid application for benefits denied should contact a lawyer to discuss options as soon as possible. This will help to ensure that workers are able to receive maximum benefits without becoming ineligible.