SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY BENEFITS
Do Other Benefits Impact My Social Security Disability Payments? Top Lancaster Disability Lawyers Explain SSD Benefits.
PA Disability Lawyers Help Clients Understand What Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) You Get When Receiving Other Benefits
SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY LAW
Lancaster Lawyers Explain How Other Disability Benefits Can Affect Social Security Disability SSDI
Some public disability benefits can reduce your Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. Workers’ Compensation is perhaps one of the most common benefits that can cause a reduction in SSDI benefits. If you are currently receiving public disability benefits, you can still apply for SSDI, but the Administration will not allow your combined benefits to exceed 80% of your average current earnings prior to the onset date of your disability. If you are awarded SSDI benefits and they exceed 80% of your average current earnings, the Administration will deduct your award until it meets the 80% criterion. This reduction is commonly referred to as an “offset.”
In order to determine an offset, the Administration must determine an individual’s average current earnings. There are three ways to determine an individual’s average current earnings, and the highest of these three will be used in calculating a potential offset. The first way, “High-1,” will use a person’s average monthly income based on a single calendar year from covered employment. Under High-1, the Administration will only consider a single calendar year’s income for the year that a claimant’s disability began or for any of the five years preceding the beginning of the disability. The second way, “High-5,” will use a claimant’s average monthly earnings over a consecutive period of five years. Unlike High-1, High-5 will consider any five consecutive years of income. The third way, “AMW,” will use the average monthly wage of a claimant’s un-indexed disability primary insurance.
Not all of the benefits you receive will be considered in determining a possible reduction of SSD benefits. The following is a list of benefits that are NOT considered in determining an offset:
- All Department of Veterans Affairs benefits
- Unemployment benefits
- Need-based benefits
- Federal, State, or local disability benefits based on State or local employment, all or almost all of which were covered for Social Security purposes
- Private pension or private insurance benefits
- Black Lung Part B benefits
- Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA) sickness benefits
- Railroad injury settlement payments under the Federal Employer’s Liability Act (FELA)
- Sick pay paid by an employer
- Proceeds from third-party settlements
- Interest or other income generated by workers’ compensation investments
- Jones Act payments
- Payments from tort (negligence) lawsuits
- Workers’ Compensation/public disability benefits paid under a law or plan enacted by an American Indian Tribal Government
- Workers’ Compensation payments made to the employer
Social Security is the largest Federal program to ever exist in the United States. The application and appeals process can feel overwhelming and difficult. An appeal must be made within 60 days of the day you received a letter indicating your denial for benefits. As of April 2019, the first level of appeal is a reconsideration, where the SSA will again review the claim to see if a mistake was made in the initial determination. The next level of appeal is a hearing by an administrative law judge (ALJ). Moreover, many SSD claims are denied at the initial level. At Rankin & Gregory, we understand that it is hard to deal with legal matters while having to manage your disability. We can help. Contact us today for a free case evaluation. Let us handle your claim so that you focus on getting better.
The attorneys at Rankin & Gregory are experienced in both Workers’ Compensation and SSD. When we settle a Workers’ Compensation case, we make sure to put our client into a position that will allow him or her to maximize any potential SSD benefits. Your injury does NOT have to be work-related for you to be considered eligible for SSD benefits. If you have become disabled and can no longer work, call us today for a free consultation.
Call our Lancaster or Leola – Leacock area disability benefits attorneys at 717.656.5000
Rankin & Gregory, LLC, RG Injury Law fights for fair compensation for clients injured in car accidents, personal injury accidents, and Workers’ Compensation workplace incidents, slip and fall accidents, wrongful death cases, veterans disability appeals, and Social Security disability claims throughout Pennsylvania, including our beautiful hometown of Lancaster County.
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