Social Security Benefits

Can you continue to work while receiving Social Security Benefits?

The good news is that there are special rules which allow you to continue working temporarily once you are approved for benefits, without losing your monthly Social Security disability benefits. A New York Social Security attorney can help. If you live in Queens, contact a Queens Social Security attorney. If you live in Brooklyn, a Brooklyn Social Security attorney. Bronx residents should contact a Bronx Social Security attorney. If you are in Staten Island, contact a Staten Island Social Security attorney. If you reside on Long Island, a Long Island Social Security attorney. You should always contact a Social Security Disability attorney for advice in this matter.

The trial work period – After a person becomes eligible for disability benefits, you have the option of attempting to return to work. As an incentive, the Social Security Administration provides a nine month trial work period during which you can test your ability to work and earn any level of income while still keeping your full SSDI benefits. This is a great way for you to get a job without having to worry about losing your SSDI benefits. Furthermore, if you make less than $750 (gross) or if you work less than 80 hours per month in self-employment (irrespective of the amount earned), that month will not count toward your nine months. Your nine trial work months need not be consecutive, so there can be gaps between your trial work months that count toward your nine-month limit. Only at the expiration of that trial work period may your benefits potentially be affected. If you live in the Bronx, contact a Bronx Social Security

Extended period of eligibility – After your trial work period, the amount of your monthly income becomes relevant to whether you can continue receiving your monthly benefits. During this 36 month period, you can still receive benefits as long as your earnings are below the substantial gainful activity (SGA) level and you continue to have a disabling impairment. In 2013, earnings are “substantial” if they are over $1,040 ($1,740 if you are blind). Your eligibility to receive monthly benefits is determined on a month-to-month basis. If your gross income is at or below the SGA amount for any month, you are eligible to your full SSDI benefit amount for that month. Your benefits will be suspended for any month where your earnings are over the SGA level. The SGA amount is adjusted by the Social Security Administration (SSA) each year. Therefore, you should check the financial limits before engaging in any type of work.

Reinstatement – If your benefits are terminated after the trial work period ends because your earnings are substantial, and then you become unable to work again because of your medical condition, you have up to five years during which you can ask Social Security to start your payments again. You do not have to file a new application. Simply contact the Social Security Administration and request reinstatement if you are disabled because of the impairment(s) that is the same as or related to the impairment(s) that allowed you to get benefits earlier. Reinstatement is an expedited process. While your case is assessed to determine whether you are entitled to benefits again, you have the right to request provisional (temporary) benefits for up to 6 months. The odds are in your favor when you file an application for expedited reinstatement. Social Security must prove that you have medically improved since the last time you were receiving benefits before denying your claim. In contrast, if you file a new application for benefits, you must prove that you are medically disabled for your claim to be granted.

It is important to promptly notify Social Security when you start or stop working because it could affect your benefits.

Harris, Ugalde & Rzonca is a a New York Social Security firm that can help. If you live in Queens, contact a Queens Social Security lawyer, such as Harris, Ugalde & Rzonca. If you live in Brooklyn, a Brooklyn Social Security lawyer, Bronx residents should contact a Bronx Social Security lawyer, if you are in Staten Island, contact a Staten Island Social Security lawyer, such as Harris, Ugalde & Rzonca. If you reside on Long Island, a Long Island Social Security lawyer, we have an office on Long Island. You should always contact a Social Security Disability lawyer for advice in this matter, such as Harris, Ugalde & Rzonca. If you have been hurt at work, a New York workers compensation attorney should be consulted, as well, such as Harris Ugalde & Rzonca.