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Income that may Cause Your Social Security Disability Benefits to be Reduced

health insurance benefits with stethoscope on topIf you are currently receiving monthly benefits from the public sector or some type of insurance coverage, it may decrease the amount of Social Security Disability benefits you may be eligible to receive. However, there are many types of benefits/income that will not cause a reduction in your disability benefits.

Have a question about Social Security Disability? Our attorneys offer a free legal consultation that comes with no obligation.

Income That Does Not Reduce SSD Payments

If you are currently receiving unemployment benefits because you have been laid off by your employer, you can continue to collect those benefits without experiencing a decrease in your SSD payments.

If you are a veteran who regularly receives disability benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, you can continue to collect both types of disability benefits simultaneously.

Other examples of income/benefits that do not reduce SSD payments include:

  • Private pensions
  • Private insurance benefits
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments
  • State or local government retirement based on a disability
  • Payments from a Jones Act claim
  • Settlement from a negligence case
  • Federal Employer’s Liability Act compensation

Income That Does Decrease Disability Benefits

While there are many forms of income or benefits that do not affect your SSD benefits, there are a few that cause a reduction in benefits.

For example, benefits will be reduced if you receive any of the following:

  • Workers’ compensation
  • Civil service disability
  • Temporary disability from the state
  • State or local government retirement
  • Lump sum disability payments

If you receive SSD, workers’ compensation and public disability benefits, the total amount you receive cannot be greater than 80 percent of your average current earnings. Otherwise, the excess amount above 80 percent will be taken off your SSD benefits. This will be in effect until you hit full retirement age or the month your other benefits end, whichever date comes first.

Your average current earnings are determined with different formulas. The one they use depends on an applicant’s specific circumstances.

It is very important to immediately inform the Social Security Administration (SSA) of any changes to the other benefits you receive. If they stop or there is a reduction in the amount you receive, your SSD benefits can be increased.

What About Income From Working?

Unless you earn more than the substantial gainful activity (SGA) limit set the SSA, you can work and receive benefits at the same time.

The SGA limit for 2019 is $1,220 for non-blind applicants and $2,040 for blind applicants. These amounts increase to $1,260 and $2,110 for 2020.

Disability applicants can also have a nine-month trial work period where they earn more than the SGA limit. The purpose of this period is to test their ability to work. After those nine months are up, if you continue working, you can still earn benefits in any month where your income is below the SGA limit.

Contact an Attorney With Your SSD Questions

If you have questions you can schedule a free legal consultation with our Harrisburg Social Security Disability lawyers. Our attorneys have extensive knowledge of Social Security Administration (SSA) regulations and eligibility requirements.

We take cases on contingency, so there are no upfront fees and we do not get paid unless you receive benefits.

Call our office today at (717) 888-8888 for a free case review.