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Can You Return to Work If You Get Social Security Disability Benefits?

An experienced work injury lawyer can review your situation and help you understand what benefits you are entitled to.

If after a work injury you’re also on disability, then you are probably looking at this monthly benefit as an integral source of income that can help you keep the lights on.

However, at some point, you likely want to return to work, and may be understandably worried what would happen to your monthly benefits. The truth is, it greatly depends on your medical condition and the line of work you are returning to.

4 things a workers comp attorney can help you with

What Does the Law Say?

Social Security benefits aren’t regulated by the Missouri State, but by the Social Security Administration, which analyzes your case and sees if you are eligible for benefits. The way you were placed on Social Security Disability can affect whether you can resume work activity and still receive the benefits.

Simply put, if your case is under a “medical vocational allowance,” then you cannot work and receive the benefits at the same time. However, under other plans, you may be able to do so under certain conditions.

The SSA is required by law to review your case occasionally to see if there is any change to your health that may make you ineligible to keep receiving the benefits. For instance, your health can improve to such an extent that you may not be disabled anymore. Because of that, there is no reason for the SSA to continue making the payment.

If you go back to work, the SSA may decide you are no longer disabled and stop the benefits if:

  • Your work is considered substantial in comparison to the disability – if you are able to perform such activities, then it is a clear sign your condition improved;
  • If, upon reviewing your case, they see your medical condition is improved or you are no longer disabled.

Work Incentive Programs

The SSA also offers disability beneficiaries a number of work incentives and assistance programs that can help you get back to work while protecting your benefit eligibility. Ticket to Work, for instance, can help you get rehabilitated and back on the workforce and allow you to become financially independent again.

However, even if you follow such a program, your medical condition is still the main teller of whether your social security benefits will still be sent out to you or not. While the SSA has different rules on how often they review a case based on the severity of the disability, you should keep in mind that you are legally obligated to inform the administration of any changes in your case, including whether you are going back to work.

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Updated: April 4, 2024