Many disabled people who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) eventually want to attempt to return to work. However, they may fear that they will lose their benefits if they try to return to work. Fortunately, the Social Security Administration (SSA) established a trial work period that gives disabled individuals the opportunity to try returning to work without losing their benefits. But, what happens when the trial work period ends? Here’s what you should know:
An Overview of the Trial Work Period
The trial work period lasts for nine months. A month will only count towards this trial work period if you earn more than $880 during it. For example, let’s say you earn $1000 in January and $700 in February. January will count as one month in your nine-month trial work period, but February will not since you did not earn more than $880.
During your trial work period, you will continue to receive disability benefits regardless of how much you earn through your work.
What Happens After the Trial Work Period Ends?
The 36-month extended period of eligibility begins as soon as your trial work period ends. During this 36-month period, the SSA will review your monthly income to determine whether or not you are entitled to benefits. The monthly income limit for 2019 is $2,040 for blind individuals and $1,220 for non-blind, disabled individuals. You will not receive benefits for any month that you earn more than these monthly income limits.
For example, let’s say you are a non-blind, disabled individual who is in the extended period of eligibility after completing the trial work period. You earn $1,500 in January and $1000 in February. You will not receive benefits in January since you earned more than the $1,220 monthly income limit. However, you will receive benefits in February since you did not earn more than the SSA’s monthly income limit.
You may still receive benefits after the extended period of eligibility is over. The SSA will continue to send you benefits if you are unable to work or earning less than the monthly income limit after this 36-month period is over.
There’s no need to fear that you will immediately lose your benefits if you attempt to return to work. The SSA will ensure that your benefits continue until you are fully capable of supporting yourself.
If you are unable to work due to a disability, it’s in your best interest to contact Armstrong & Vaught, P.L.C. right away. Our experienced attorneys will work tirelessly to submit your application and secure disability benefits as quickly as possible. Call us at (918) 582-2500 or toll-free at (800) 722-8880 or complete the simple form below for a free consultation with a skilled attorney.