Founded in by brothers Tom and David Gardner, The Motley Fool helps millions of people attain financial freedom through our website, podcasts, books, newspaper column, radio show, and premium investing services. Social Security isn't just for retirees; it's also designed to help people with disabilities stay afloat financially.
Last year, almost 9 million Americans received Social Security disability benefits. But as useful as those benefits might be, they're often not enough to help recipients cover their living costs in full.
If you're receiving Social Security disability benefits, there's good news in this regard: You can work and continue to collect your monthly Social Security payments as long as you meet certain criteria. To be considered eligible for Social Security disability benefits, you cannot engage in what's known as substantial gainful activity SGA.
HOW MUCH INCOME CAN YOU EARN ON SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY?
The Social Security Administration defines "substantial" as earning more than a certain amount each month. However, there are also exceptions to this rule. Trial work period Sometimes it's hard to know whether you'll be able to return to work following a disability. Thankfully, the Social Security Administration allows you to test the waters without compromising your disability benefits.
During what's known as your trial work period, you can test your ability to work for nine months, during which you'll receive your disability benefits in full, regardless of how much you make. If you're self-employed, any month where you work more than 80 hours is also considered a trial work month.
Your trial period will continue until you've worked nine months within a month timeframe. Once your trial work period is over, you can still receive disability benefits for any month in which your earnings fall below the SGA threshold. This extended period of eligibility lasts 36 months and offers additional protection in the event that you're unable to work consistently as a result of your condition.
Furthermore, if your Social Security disability payments do stop because your income exceeds the SGA limit, you still have five years to get those benefits reinstated. However, the Social Security Administration will deduct certain disability-related expenses that allow you to work from your income to lower your earnings on paper.
If, for example, you're unable to take public transportation to work because of your disability and must pay for taxis or car service instead, deducting that cost from your earnings could be enough to push you below the SGA threshold, which would help you hold on to your disability benefits while employed.
Remember, the Social Security Administration actually encourages those receiving disability benefits to pursue work opportunities, and has special programs in place to help make that happen. And working while collecting benefits could wind up being just as good for your health as it is for your bank account.
What Are Allowable Earnings in Disability? | hypufiyuyuq.web.fc2.com
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Her goal is to make financial topics interesting because they often aren't and believes that a healthy dose of sarcasm never hurt anyone. In her somewhat limited spare time, she enjoys playing in nature, watching hockey, and curling up with a good book. Skip to main content The Motley Fool Fool. Premium Advice Help Fool Answers Contact Us Login.
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May 16, at 6:Income and Assets After Your SSDI or SSI Award