For many Americans, disability benefits are a huge help in maintaining some sense of independence and covering their monthly expenses. Of course, the amount received thanks to SSI or SSDI varies, and it isn’t always enough to enable you to do everything you want. Naturally, many people receiving disability benefits wonder if they’re able to work in order to earn more money. While the simple answer is yes, the details can be very complicated. Luckily, there are resources like the Social Security Ticket to Work program which can assist you with the specifics and guide you through the process.
Social Security Disability Insurance
To be brief, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is designed to provide an income for people who are unable to work due to illness, injury, or another condition. The degree of disability and nature of the disability may vary from one recipient to the next. However, simply receiving disability benefits doesn’t mean you are prevented from having other sources of income. It depends upon the source of income and the amount.
According to the Social Security Administration’s rules, a person may be eligible for disability benefits if they aren’t able to engage in “substantial gainful activity” or SGA. A number of factors affect this determination. The work is considered to be “substantial” if it requires significant physical labor or mental activity. It’s determined to be “gainful” if it’s performed for pay or profit. Additionally, whether or not it’s intended for profit is also taken into consideration. This is regardless of any profit actually being earned.
If the person is typically able to work and earn above a specified amount, the person is either not considered to be disabled or not disabled enough to qualify for assistance. This amount changes depending upon the cost of living. The amount may be different due to the person’s specific medical condition as well.
Sources of Income
Not all sources of income are treated in the same way. For instance, money received from a personal injury settlement would not qualify as SGA. Other sources of income, such as a trust, annuity, or other protected sources, may not be deemed SGA either. The specifics and details matter in these cases, so it’s worth speaking with an attorney or a qualified Social Security representative to learn more.
Programs and Assistance
Fortunately, there are organizations and programs that are able to help you navigate the intricacies of SSDI. As already noted, there is a threshold when it comes to income, even if it is deemed to be SGA. This means you may be able to work part-time hours or at a position that doesn’t provide income significant enough to disqualify you from receiving your disability benefits.
This isn’t something you want to tackle without assistance. Most resources you find will tell you to speak with an attorney to investigate your case. Every individual’s situation is different, so it’s essential that your specific circumstances are taken into account.
The Social Security Ticket to Work program is an excellent example of a program specifically designed to aid people receiving disability benefits. If you already receive SSI or SSDI benefits, the program is built to help you explore employment opportunities and career possibilities. Although not all recipients qualify for the program, the majority do.
As you can see, navigating disability benefits and related work can be difficult. Speak with DisABLEd Workers at 877-291-9806 to learn more. Their experienced and professional staff can aid you with understanding your benefits and getting the most out of related programs.