Social Security disability benefits are extremely valuable to individuals who are unable to work due to a disability. But what happens when a Social Security disability benefits recipient returns to work? While these types of benefits are intended to help those who can’t work, there are specific circumstances in which a disabled individual can hold a job and continue to receive benefits. It is critical to consult with an experienced disability attorney to find out what the rules are that may affect working while on disability and what your rights are.
How long do Social Security disability benefits continue?
Disabled individuals will continue to receive Social Security disability benefits until one of the following occurs:
- He or she reaches retirement age and begins receiving Social Security retirement payments
- He or she commits a crime and is institutionalized or incarcerated
- His or her medical condition improves to the extent that he or she is no longer considered disabled
- He or she earns income over the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level without an exception being met, such as a qualifying Trial Work Period (TWP)
Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) Work and Affect on Disability
As noted above, Social Security disability benefits may be terminated when a beneficiary returns to work and earns more than SGA. For 2019, SGA is $1,220 per month for a disabled individual and $2040 per month if a disabled individual is blind. In other words, a disabled individual can work part-time and still receive Social Security disability benefits as long as he or she earns under these amounts. However, there are programs in place designed to encourage individuals to test their ability to work, even above SGA levels, which will trigger a TWP. However, it is important to notify the Social Security Administration right away if you do return to work once approved for disability benefits.
Self-employed individuals and SGA
SGA determinations can be complex for self-employed individuals. For example, a self-employed individual may work well over 40 hours per week and still earn below SGA. In order to make SGA determinations for self-employed recipients, the Social Security Administration employs several tests to determine whether the continued receipt of benefits is appropriate. If you have questions about whether your self-employment, or other work, may impact your disability benefits, or are thinking about applying or appealing a denial, contact our experienced attorneys for a free consultation.
Michigan disability law attorneys
The cancellation of SSD benefits can be devastating. Therefore, if you would like to receive disability benefits but don’t know how to apply, or if your SSD benefits have been cancelled, the skilled disability law attorneys at Disability Law Group are here to help. At Disability Law Group, our experienced disability law attorneys will assist you with every step of the disability benefits application process. So, if you live in Macomb County, Oakland County, Wayne County, or elsewhere in Michigan and would like to apply for disability benefits or fight a denial, Disability Law Group is on your side. Remember, at Disability Law Group, disability is all we do. Please contact us as soon as possible for a free consultation.