Can you work when receiving Social Security Disability Benefits?
People often wonder whether or not they can work while receiving Social Security Disability benefits. The simple answer is yes—under certain conditions. It is strongly recommended that. if you are considering making an effort to work while receiving Social Security Disability benefits, you consult with an experienced Social Security Disability attorney. The rules and regulations that apply are complex and one size does not fit all. There are many factors that need to be considered by an attorney and there are numerous pitfalls to avoid.
Social Security Disability recipients are provided with a “trial work period.” So long as an individual is within a “trial work period,” the individual can continue to receive Social Security Disability benefits regardless of the amount of the individual’s income during the “trial work period.” At the time this article was written, a “trial work period” expires once an individual has achieved gross monthly earnings exceeding $840.00 in nine months. It is important to note that these nine months need not be consecutive.
After an individual’s “trial work period” has concluded, they can continue to work, but they can only continue to receive Social Security Disability benefits so long as that individual’s gross monthly earnings do not exceed $1,170.00* (*in 2017; this number changes every year). If an individual’s gross monthly earnings exceed $1,170.00* they are considered by the Social Security Administration to be engaged in “substantial gainful activity.”
If an individual’s Social Security Disability benefits have ceased because the individual is engaged in “substantial gainful activity,” the individual’s Social Security Disability benefits may be reinstated immediately at any time within a five year window if the individual must stop working again as a result of their disability.
*As stated above, the gross monthly earning thresholds identified above apply to calendar year 2017. The Social Security Administration adjusts the gross monthly earning thresholds on a yearly basis. An individual that is receiving Social Security Disability benefits due to blindness has a significantly higher gross monthly earning threshold.
There are numerous additional Social Security Administration rules and regulations that apply to and affect an individual’s ability to work while receiving Social Security Disability benefits. Know your rights and responsibilities. Be safe instead of sorry. Call our office to speak with one of our experienced Social Security Disability attorneys for a free consultation.