What To Do If Your Benefits Are Already Being Withheld
If youre subject to the Social Security earnings limit, dont wait for the SSA to start reducing the benefit you receive. Instead, Id recommend voluntarily suspending benefits.
If you wait for the Social Security Administration to discover that youve earned too much working while receiving benefits, your risk of an overpayment notice is higher.
Either way, you arent missing payments that youll never get back. Your benefit amount will be recalculated at your full retirement age to reflect the months that benefits were withheld.
The best way to avoid the earnings limitation is to wait until full retirement age to file for benefits. If you cant wait, make sure you have a clear understanding of how working impacts your Social Security benefits.
If you still have questions, you could leave a comment below, but what may be an even greater help is to join my . Its very active and has some really smart people who love to answer any questions you may have about Social Security. From time to time Ill even drop in to add my thoughts, too.
You should also consider joining the 295,000+ subscribers on my YouTube channel! For visual learners , this is where I break down the complex rules and help you figure out how to use them to your advantage.
Offsetting Your Earnings With Expenses
Earning more than $1,180 per month, or $1,970 per month if youre blind, can make you ineligible for disability benefits. 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, youre 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. Lets say, for instance, that you earn $2,000 per month but have $900 in deductible expenses. That $900 will effectively reduce your income to $1,100, leaving you eligible for Social Security disability benefits.
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.
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How To Make More Than The Income Cap And Still Get Ssd Benefits
The TRIAL WORK PERIOD Program
Once the Social Security Administration realized that suspending the SSD benefits of a recipient who succeeded in earning more than the income cap in one month discouraged SSD beneficiaries from trying to work, the SSA needed to solve this dilemma. The SSA wanted to encourage SSD recipients to attempt a return to work, if they thought they were up to it. How else would a disabled person know what they were capable of achieving as time passed and their impaired condition improved?
The Trial Work Period program enables SSD recipients to try to resume working without fear of losing their monthly SSD benefit. Under the TWP plan, a disabled SSD recipient who thinks they may be able to return to work is free to try and continue to get their monthly SSD payments.
There are rules and limits to the TWP program, but the arrangement allows you to earn an unlimited amount of monthly income for a total of nine months. The nine months do not have to be consecutive. They can be spread out over a five-year period.
Which Months Count as Trial Work Period Months?
The Trial Work Period program can run for any nine months in a five-year period. So, which months count as TWP months? While you can earn an unlimited amount of income in each of the nine months of your TWP, any month in which you earn more than $907 is counted as one TWP month. In 2022, the TWP monthly trigger amount will be $970.
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How To Make Sure You Dont Lose Your Ssdi Benefits
If youre thinking about applying for disability but are still employed, or if youve been receiving benefits but are considering part-time work to help make ends meet, its crucial that you get all the facts before making any decisions that could put your disability benefits in jeopardy.
To get help with applying for Social Security programs, appealing a decision, or just to talk about all your legal options, consider contacting an experienced Social Security disability lawyer at Social Security Disability Advocates USA.
Our friendly legal team will schedule a free consultation to review your case and help you understand the possible impacts of SSDI income limits. Call us today at , chat with us via LiveChat, or send us a message using our secure contact form.
Trial Work Periods For Ssdi
To give individuals receiving SSDI benefits the opportunity to see if their disability allows them to return to work the SSA offers a trial work period. The trial period lasts for up to nine months, but they do not have to be consecutive. You just have to use them within 60 months.
A trial month in 2021 is any month in which you earn at least $940. Regardless of how much money you earn during a trial month does not count against your SSDI benefits, so you get to keep your wages without a reduction in benefits.
At the end of the initial trial period, you may continue to work for another 36 months without the money that you earn affecting your monthly SSDI. However, if you earn more than the substantial gainful activity amount, which is $1,310 in 2021, the SSA will determine that you are no longer eligible for SSDI.
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How Much Can You Earn Without Losing Social Security Retirement Benefits
The impact of work on your Social Security retirement benefits will vary depending on whether you have reached full retirement age .
FRA is the age at which you’re entitled to claim full retirement benefits without a reduction due to filing early. Your FRA depends on your birth year, as the chart below shows. If you’ve already reached it, you can work as much as you want without affecting your benefits. If you’re below it, you can do some work, but some of your benefits checks could be withheld if you earn too much.
|If You Were Born in||Your FRA Is|
The amount of income you can earn before your benefits are withheld will vary depending on whether you will reach FRA at some point in the year you’re working.
I Will Lose My Ssi/ssdi Checks When I Start To Work
It is a common concern to be worried about starting work and not earning enough money to pay your expenses and, at the same time, not getting your SSI/SSDI checks anymore.
Both SSI and SSDI have rules to protect your benefits so you can try working and not worry about losing your cash benefits if you cant keep working, or you need to work fewer hours. Some of these rules are the same if you are on SSI or SSDI, but most of them are different. It is important to know if you are on SSI or SSDI, or both. If you are not sure, you may want to request something called a Benefits Planning Query from your Social Security office to find out. For more information on BPQY, click here. You can also read the first page of this section, which has information on figuring whether you are on SSI or SSDI.
o Be paid by you and not paid or reimbursed by another source
o Relate to a serious medical condition, and
o Be necessary without it, you will be unable to work
Special Monthly Income Limit Rule For The First Year
Many people who retire mid-year have already earned more income than the limit allows. This is why there is a special rule where the earnings limit switches from an annual limit to a monthly limit.
This rule allows you to receive a check for any month you are considered retired by the SSA even if you have already exceeded the annual earnings limit.
That sounds straightforward enough but the interpretation of retired as defined by the SSA can cause some confusion. Heres what they mean by this term:
You are retired if your monthly earnings are 1/12 of the annual limit or less and you did not perform substantial services in self-employment.
Essentially, you are considered retired unless you make more than the income limit. The rule for the year you reach full retirement age also applies when working with the monthly limit. In this calendar year for 2021, the limit is $4,210 .
Its very important to remember that in the year following this first year, the monthly limit is no longer used and the earnings limit is based solely on your annual earnings limit.
Make Payments To The Federal Government
Learn how to use Pay.gov to make secure, electronic payments to government agencies from your checking or savings account. You can use the online service for VA medical care copayments, U.S. district court tickets, U.S. Coast Guard merchant mariner user fee payments, and more.
If you need help, contact Pay.gov customer service.
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How Much You Can Earn And Keep Drawing Ssd Benefits
The Social Security Disability monthly earnings limit in 2021 is $1,310 for non-blind SSD benefit recipients and $2,190 for blind recipients. That means for most SSD recipients, you can earn up to $1,310 of income per month and remain at your full benefit level. The limits will be higher in 2022 due to the annual adjustment for inflation. The 2022 monthly earning limit is $1,350.
The Social Security Administration treats earned income differently when you are receiving SSD benefits from how it is handled for Supplemental Security Income benefit recipients. In the SSI program, if a person receiving SSI benefits earns more than the permitted amount in any given month, their benefit is reduced by an amount equal to how much they exceeded the earnings limit. But with SSD benefits, unless you are participating in the Trial Work Period plan, if you exceed the $1,310 earnings limit, you are disqualified from getting any benefit, at least for the month in which you exceeded the limit.
How To Receive Federal Benefits
To begin receiving your federal benefits, like Social Security or veterans benefits, you must sign up for electronic payments with direct deposit.
If You Have a Bank or Credit Union Account:
- Call the Go Direct Helpline at .
If You Don’t have a Bank or Credit Union Account:
- Direct Express debit card – a pre-paid debit card. Get help by calling the Go Direct Helpline at .
Make Changes to an Existing Direct Deposit Account:
Learn how to make changes to an existing direct deposit account. You also may contact the federal agency that pays your benefit for help with your enrollment.
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What Are My Income Limits On Social Security
Since its inception, Social Security has benefitted hundreds of millions of Americans in need. A large portion of these benefits go to those with severe disabilities who are unable to earn sufficient wages.
To be sure Social Security goes to those who need it most, income plays a large role in deciding who receives Social Security disability insurance and Supple-mental Security Income .
How Much Can You Earn Without Losing Supplemental Security Income Benefits
Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, also provides benefits to disabled individuals as well as to seniors over 65.
SSI is not an earned benefits program, unlike SSDI. Eligibility is not dependent on working and earning work credits as you pay Social Security taxes but instead is based on financial need. If you have a low household income and less than $2,000 in individual countable assets or $3,000 in countable assets as a couple, you can become eligible for these benefits.
Because SSI benefits are for lower-income recipients, you will lose access to these benefits if you have too much money coming in from any other sources. In fact, you can lose eligibility for SSI if you have earned income or if you have unearned income including:
- Social Security retirement benefits
- Money from state disability programs
- Unemployment benefits
- Income from interest or dividends
You can also lose access to SSI if you have deemed income, which is income from other people who you live with or from the person who sponsored you if you are an alien. And if you get food or shelter for free, this is even considered a type of income, called in-kind income, that can affect access to benefits.
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Employment: Social Security Disability Work Incentives At A Glance
SSDI WORK INCENTIVES
Trial Work Period The trial work period allows you to test your ability to work for at least nine months. During your trial work period, you will receive your full Social Security benefits regardless of how much you are earning as long as you report your work activity and you continue to have a disabling impairment. In 2021, a trial work month is any month in which your total earnings are $940 or more, or, if you are self employed, you earn more than $940 or spend more than 80 hours in your own business. The trial work period continues until you have worked nine months within a 60-month period.
Extended Period of Eligibility After your trial work period, you have 36 months during which you can work and still receive benefits for any month your earnings are not substantial. In 2021, earnings of $1,310 or more are considered substantial. No new application or disability decision is needed for you to receive a Social Security disability benefit during this period.
Expedited Reinstatement After your benefits stop because your earnings are substantial, you have five years during which you may ask Social Security to start your benefits immediately if you find yourself unable to continue working because of your condition. ou will not have to file a new disability application, and you will not have to wait for your benefits to start while your medical condition is being reviewed to make sure you are still disabled.
Do Unemployment Benefits Affect Ssi Or Ssdi Benefits And Vice Versa
Most people who receive Social Security benefits do not want to risk losing the monthly payments that provide partial replacement income. That is why many Americans who receive benefits through Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income are reluctant to apply for unemployment benefits when they lose their job out of fear that they could lose their SSDI or SSI benefits.
Should you worry about losing your eligibility for SSI or SSDI benefits if you wish to apply for unemployment compensation benefits in Florida?
Do Unemployment Benefits Affect Your SSDI or SSI Eligibility?
The Social Security Administration considers unemployment benefits unearned income. Thus, these benefits will likely have no effect on your SSDI benefits if you are not working.
As for your SSI eligibility, things are more complicated. Since unemployment benefits are unearned income, these payments will reduce SSI dollar for dollar .
In 2020, the monthly federal payment maximum is $783 for an eligible individual. Thus, anyone receiving unemployment benefits that exceed $803 is not eligible for SSI due to excess income.
Under certain circumstances, you might lose your eligibility to collect unemployment benefits: These include but are not limited to:
- Insufficient earnings
- Leaving your job to attend school.
Do Social Security Benefits Affect Unemployment Benefits?
Can You Collect Both Unemployment and Social Security Benefits?
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Can You Get Ssdi And Ssi At The Same Time
In some cases, a disabled worker may receive payments from both the SSD and SSI programs. Typically, they qualify for SSD, but because they made very little over a short work history, even with SSD they have the financial need that makes them eligible for SSI. Receiving both SSD and SSI is referred to as concurrent benefits.
When the Social Security Administration considers your application for SSD or SSI, it will determine whether you qualify for concurrent benefits, depending on your income and assets.
In addition to more in your monthly check, having SSI in addition to SSD makes you instantly eligible for Medicaid. An SSD recipient qualifies for Medicaid two years after they become eligible for SSD. Both SSI and SSD recipients are also eligible for Medicare, which covers fewer services, but which more doctors accept.
Determining which benefits you qualify to receive, instead of just hoping some overworked SSA claims examiner gets it right, requires a thorough understanding of the SSD and SSI programs and accompanying law. Our attorneys have that knowledge as well as the commitment required to make sure you obtain the full benefits that you are entitled to by law.
Ssd Lawyer Explains Social Security Disability Income Limit
As Northern New Jerseys premier SSD lawyer, M.J. Ellis specializes in representing SSD and SSI applicants from preparing their claims through to the final award decision. But a great SSD law attorney is an expert at understanding the many rules and regulations involved with SSDI and SSI benefits. Questions about how your benefits work and what you can earn while on SSD benefits is a common question.
Here are the basics you need to know
- 2021 Maximum Allowable Earned Income Drawing SSD Benefits = $1,310 per month
- blind SSD benefits recipients earning limit is $2,190 per month