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Can you work and get SSDI at the same time?

On Behalf of | Mar 20, 2024 | Social Security Disability |

Social Security Disability Insurance provides financial support to those unable to work due to a disability. However, many people wonder if they can hold down a job and receive SSDI benefits simultaneously.

Understanding the rules and regulations surrounding employment and SSDI is helpful for anyone navigating the complexities of disability benefits.

Eligibility criteria for SSDI

To qualify for SSDI benefits, individuals must meet specific criteria set by the Social Security Administration. A primary requirement is having a disabling condition that prevents substantial gainful activity. If your disability limits your ability to earn a sufficient income level each month, you may be eligible for SSDI. However, the SSA recognizes that some individuals with disabilities may still be able to work to some extent.

Trial Work Periods

The SSA accommodates those who wish to return to work while receiving SSDI through Trial Work Periods. During a TWP, recipients can test their ability to work without jeopardizing benefits. The SSA allows recipients to work and earn income during this trial period without impacting SSDI eligibility, provided they continue to meet other disability criteria. However, when the trial period ends, earnings beyond a certain threshold could affect benefit payments.

Substantial Gainful Activity threshold

The SSA defines SGA as the level of earnings that the administration considers significant enough to show an individual’s ability to work. As of 2024, the SGA limit is $1,550 per month for non-blind individuals and $2,590 for blind individuals. Earning above this threshold could trigger a reduction or cessation of SSDI benefits. Whether this happens depends on various factors. Some of these variables include the severity of the disability and the individual’s work capacity.

Navigating the intersection of work and SSDI benefits requires careful consideration. While SSDI provides financial support to people with disabilities, it also recognizes the importance of employment and personal independence.