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Working On Disability (SSDI)

For those out there who are reliant on a source of income such as Social Security Disability, there are ways to work while receiving this type of monthly benefit payment. Many Americans believe that receiving these monthly benefits means that no other work may be allowed by the Social Security Administration. That is actually not true however. Those who receive Social Security Disability are just restricted from making the SGA limit known as substantial gainful activity. This limit is set at $1276 every month for the year of 2021. Breaking this limit would result in a SSDI recipient having their monthly benefits be revoked. 

To be brief, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is designed to provide an income for people who are unable to work due to illnesses, injuries, or other medical conditions. The degree of disability or type of disability may vary from one recipient to another.  However, simply receiving disability benefits doesn’t mean you can’t work. It depends upon the source of income and the amount.

According to the Social Security Administration’s rules, a person could be eligible for disability benefits if they aren’t able to engage in “substantial gainful activity” or SGA. A number of factors will affect this determination. The work is considered to be “substantial” if it requires substantial physical or mental activity. It’s determined to be “gainful” if it’s performed for profit. 

That said, if you are exceeding the monthly income and still receiving benefits, it will be a while before this is noticed and will result in you having to pay back these over-payments for the months you were receiving benefits when you should not have. Another issue is that for those with new jobs, this can be a sign of your medical disability improving which will cause a medical disability review. This can be alarming as it can cause your payments to be revoked if your disability looks to be improved and your recovery has worked. 

Returning to work can be difficult and anxious, but always make sure to follow the SGA guidelines, work in conditions that will help you maintain your disability benefits and discuss with the SSA about your new job.

Fortunately, there are organizations and programs that are able to help you navigate the maze of SSDI. As previously stated, there is a threshold when it comes to income, even if it is deemed to be Substantial Gainful Activity. 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

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