How long your Social Security Disability benefits last depends on what benefits you are receiving.
For Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), once approved, you can expect that your benefits will last until you reach retirement age unless conditions or events that affect your eligibility for benefits come into play. Earning more money than the threshold for receiving benefits, recovering from the disability for which you were awarded benefits, or being incarcerated for 30 days or more can temporarily or permanently stop your benefits.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits do not have an age limit. SSI does have income limit requirements and disability requirements for people under the age of 65. Going to jail for 30 days may also stop your SSI Disability benefits until you are released.
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How long does SSDI last?
Government programs such as SSDI and SSI are meant to provide qualified individuals with an income. If you are of working age but are unable to work due to a disability—or earn less than the maximum monthly income for which benefits are provided—you may be entitled to Social Security Disability payments.
If you meet the criteria for receiving SSDI or SSI payments, you can apply for benefits. Once they are awarded, you can continue to receive them as long as your status does not change or you do not lose eligibility for benefits in any way. Details on how a change of status can lead to a cessation of benefits are provided below:
Returning to Work or Earning Substantial Income
If you start earning over $1,350 per month, which is defined as substantial gainful activity in 2022, you may lose your Social Security Disability benefits. For SSDI, the substantial gainful activity limit for blind individuals is $2,260 per month. When receiving benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) requires you to report changes to your income.
Recovering From Your Disability
A medical improvement of your disability can cause you to lose your benefits. SSDI recipients and their benefits may be periodically reviewed to verify the status of the recipient and to reconfirm eligibility. This review is referred to as a continuing disability review or CDR.
The SSA typically performs CDRs every three or seven years, depending on the kind of disability you have and the chances it has of improving. If your condition improves and you are not classified as disabled, you may lose your benefits.
Other Reasons for the Termination of Benefits
Other reasons for losing benefits may include becoming incarcerated or leaving the country for an extended period of time, depending on the kind of benefits you receive.
After Age 65
Without any other causes for termination, Social Security Disability Insurance benefits may last until you reach retirement. You may become eligible for Social Security Retirement benefits instead at this age. SSI benefits do not expire at age 65.
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Updating the SSA
If you return to work or start earning an income, or if your medical condition improves and you are no longer disabled or unable to work, but you try to hide these facts from the SSA, you may be liable for repaying any disability benefits you received but were not entitled to.
Stay in regular contact with the SSA regarding your case, and schedule regular doctor’s visits in which your doctor can examine you and take notes on how your disability affects your ability to work and perform day-to-day activities. This proof and documentation can help during your continuing disability reviews.
Compensation Available Through SSD
The federal government offers Social Security Disability benefits to provide you with compensation if you cannot work due to a health condition. However, not everyone receives the same amount of money through the SSD system.
For example, the amount you receive through SSDI depends upon how much you earned in your life and how much you paid into the Social Security system. Generally, employees have funds automatically taken out of their paychecks to go towards this fund.
Self-employed individuals also pay towards SSDI. However, these individuals generally pay in through self-employment taxes. Only income you paid Social Security on through taxes counts towards your SSDI eligibility.
Calculating Your SSDI Payments
Everyone receives different compensation through the SSD system. You may reach out to an SSD lawyer or a local SSD office to review your situation. You may also look at an earnings statement that shows all lifetime earnings associated with your Social Security number (SSN) online.
The Social Security system uses a formula to take your average earnings and determine what you’ll receive through your SSDI payments.
Note that the government does put an upper limit on the funding you can receive through SSDI. Generally, the SSA changes this limit on a yearly basis. You can speak with a lawyer to find out if this limit applies in your situation.
SSD and Workers’ Compensation Payments
Many workers in North Carolina worry that their SSD payments will end if they receive workers’ compensation due to an on-the-job injury. In fact, you can receive both workers’ compensation and SSD compensation as long as you qualify for both forms of coverage.
In order to qualify for workers’ compensation in North Carolina, you must get hurt while performing a job task. You do not have to show that your employer caused the injury in order to receive workers’ compensation benefits, due to the no-fault nature of the system.
Generally, workers’ compensation payments cover your medical expenses and some of your lost pay during your recovery.
Adjusted Payments With SSD and Workers’ Compensation
While you can receive both workers’ compensation and SSD payments, they do not completely stack. Generally, the government has a set limit on the amount of compensation you can receive on a monthly basis. If you’d receive more than this amount with both workers’ compensation and SSD payments, they will reduce one of the payments.
You may speak with an SSD lawyer to learn more about how the government calculates the amount of compensation you receive, with or without funds from workers’ comp. Note that workers’ compensation payments are only available if you sustained an injury while working.
Therefore, many people are not eligible for workers’ compensation, despite receiving payments from SSD.
How Long Does Workers’ Compensation Last?
Workers’ compensation wage replacement benefits continue for up to 500 weeks in North Carolina. However, you only receive these benefits while unable to work. If you recover and return to the job before 500 weeks, your benefits stop.
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Contact Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, Today
If you would like legal assistance with your Social Security disability benefits application or appealing a denied claim, Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, may be able to represent you. We help our clients apply for SSDI and SSI benefits or appeal denied claims in Rutherfordton, North Carolina. Our firm can handle all of the legal work, documents, and deadlines in your case when we represent you.
In addition, our team at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, operates on a contingency-fee-basis, meaning there are no up-front payments required. Instead, our attorney fees only come as a percentage of your payout if and when you win your case.
To discuss your case, your legal options, and our services, call Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC. A member of our team is standing by to provide you with a free, no-obligation consultation on your case and set you up with a Social Security disability attorney.