Can I Apply for Disability while I’m Working?

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You can apply for disability benefits if you have a physical or psychological disability that severely limits your capacity to work.

However, what if you manage to work while receiving disability benefits?

Will the disability benefits stop, or can you continue receiving them?

Read on to answer these questions, or you may also call a Burbank social security benefits lawyer for clarifications.

Collecting Disability Benefits while Working

The Social Security Administration (SSA) allows you to work while receiving disability benefits. However, that’s with strict limitations because you must earn not more than the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) income.

So if you receive disability benefits, you lose them when you start working and earn more than the SGA.

What Is Substantial Gainful Activity?

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Gainful work activities are any activity that lets a person earn an income.

You are engaging with a substantial gainful activity if a particular source of income lets you earn more than a minimum amount. Moreover, you are ineligible for disability benefits when you take home more than the SGA limit.

That is because these benefits seek to support people with disabilities that limit their work capacity. They are people who cannot work full-time and earn enough for themselves and their families. Some of them need to cover expensive ongoing medical treatment too.

So you don’t need such financial support for people with disabilities if you earn more than the SGA income. The SSA anyway assumes you already have enough for a living.

The SGA income rate changes annually to reflect the national wage average. This 2022, the SGA monthly income is $1,350 for disabled people in general and $2,260 for blind people.

Moreover, remember that the SGA will calculate your monthly wage if you are employed and your net income if you are self-employed. Other considerations can come into play if you are self-employed too.

For example, the SSA may consider the time and skills you put into your work to see if it is similar to that of a non-disabled person.

Consult a Burbank social security benefits lawyer to know more about SGA.

What Is the SSA’s Trial Work Period?

apply for disability while I'm working

The SSA wants to help disabled people return to work, especially after recovering from injury and adjusting to a lifestyle with disability. So in some cases, they allow disabled people to continue receiving disability benefits even when earning above the SGA limit.

They will put a disabled person on a trial working period to help the person adjust and return to work. The period can last up to nine months.

The benefits will stop when the trial period is over or when the person manages to return to full-time work.

What If My Disability Worsens after I Stop Receiving Disability Benefits?

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As mentioned, the disability benefits stop if you begin earning more than the SGA or when the trial working period is over.

However, there are cases when the disability of a person worsens after the disability benefits have stopped. You may be unable to work full-time because of your worsening condition too.

Call the SSA if you find yourself in that situation so they can resume your disability benefits.

Call a Social Security Benefits Attorney in Burbank for Your Disability Benefits

The SSA made these guidelines for disabled people to enjoy disability benefits while recovering or adjusting to a new lifestyle. It can support you when you want to work despite still suffering from a temporary or permanent disability.

Consult a professional Burbank social security benefits lawyer for better advice about disability benefits.

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