What Factors Might Impact My Social Security Disability Benefits in Florida?
For many people who qualify for social security disability, it might be the majority – or possibly even the sole source – of their income. If this describes your situation, you may have questions or concerns regarding what might affect your ability to collect this income in the future, as any potential disruption could spell disaster for you and your family. Factors that may affect your ability to collect disability benefits include but are not limited to:
Starting a new job that pays a certain amount of income
Retirement, including early retirement
Collecting other payments such as worker’s compensation or temporary state disability
Your disability improves to the degree that you are deemed reasonably able to resume work again
How Much Income Can I Earn Before My Social Security Disability Payments Are Affected?
In order for your social security disability benefits to be affected, you must earn an amount of income known as ‘Substantial Gainful Activity’. This amount can vary from year-to-year, but essentially it’s a certain monthly amount of income collected over a certain number of consecutive or non-consecutive months. If your earnings from a new job were to exceed that specific amount for a specific amount of time, your disability payments may be reduced or discontinued entirely.
Can I Collect Retirement Benefits and Social Security Disability Benefits at the Same Time?
Generally the answer to this question is ‘no,’ with certain exceptions. One of these exceptions is the instance of early retirement. Because early retirement often means collecting a reduced retirement benefit, you may end up collecting both retirement benefits and social security disability benefits, but only to the point that you reach full benefit status as dictated by your reported earnings pre-disability. The maximum amount you are typically allowed to collect when combining these sources of income is 80% of your average earnings prior to becoming disabled.
Should I Speak With a Personal Attorney Regarding Any Concerns I Might Have Regarding My Social Security Disability Benefits?
Because the rules surrounding social security disability requirements can vary from year-to-year, and because of the relatively high stakes involved when dealing with what can often be your primary or only source of income, it’s always wise to reach out to a personal attorney familiar with social security disability with any new questions or concerns you may have. The last thing you want is to have your payments suddenly reduced or discontinued because of reported or unreported income. In situations like that, a person’s financial situation can quickly spiral out of control as any utility bills, rent or mortgage payments, and car payments pile up and become an intractable quagmire of debt and desperation..