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Why Disability Benefits are Stopped and What You Can Do to Have Them Restarted

If you are eligible for social security disability benefits, in most cases you will receive this for as long as you need it. Once you have started receiving these benefits, the last thing that you will want is for them to stop – after all, if you have a disability that makes it difficult for you to work as much as you might like to, you might rely on social security to ensure that your expenses are covered.

However, there are various policy reasons why your benefits might be stopped. It is important to understand what might cause your disability benefits to be ended so that you can avoid the situations that might lead to this and understand more about what has happened if your payments are stopped. Here are the top seven reasons why disability benefits might be stopped.

Medical Condition Improvement

If you are disabled due to a medical or physical health condition that has since improved, you may no longer be classed as disabled, in which case the benefits might be stopped. This will apply to both SSD and SSI claims, since the SSA will periodically review the case of each beneficiary, usually around every 3-7 years, to determine if they are still disabled. However, these reviews are usually less strict compared to the ones that are used to determine whether or not you are eligible for the disability, and there is every chance that you will continue to receive the benefit even if your condition has slightly improved. If you have had your disability benefits for this reason but believe that your health has not improved enough to warrant the benefits being terminated, get in touch with disability lawyer Brown and Crouppen who can help you get the benefits reinstated.

You’ve Reached Retirement Age

If you are in receipt of Social Security disability benefits, you will see them stop when you reach full retirement age since you cannot receive both Social Security disability and retirement benefits at the same time. Instead of the disability benefits that you have been in receipt of, you will now receive payments under the Social Security retirement benefits program.

Returning to Work

If you are receiving SSD or SSI benefits and you return to work, the SSA will carry out an assessment to determine if you are engaging in ‘substantial gainful activity’ which may be deemed enough to replace the benefits that you are in receipt of. The amount that you are paid will be taken into account as the biggest factor used to determine if the work that you are carrying out qualifies as enough to have the benefits stopped. Generally, you will be considered to be engaging in substantial gainful activity if you earn over $1,090, or $1,820 if you are blind. However, this issue is not always clear and it is possible for a determination to be made by the SSA that you are earning enough to have the benefits stopped even if you are paid less than this amount. If you want to return to work, SSI offers a Ticket to Work Program that you can sign up for.

Increasing Assets or Income

If you are in receipt of SSI benefits and your assets or income rise above the limit for eligibility, your benefit payment will stop. Currently you can earn $794 monthly while getting disability benefits and the assets that you can own before you will no longer be eligible for SSI benefits is $2,000. It is important to be aware of these limits as a beneficiary of SSI. However, determining whether or not you are over the limit can often be more complex than you might expect, due to several factors including getting free food or shelter, spousal income, parental income, and an increase in assets.

Incarceration or Institutionalization

If you are confined to a penal instruction or a prison after being convicted of committing a crime, your disability benefits will be stopped for the period of time that you are incarcerated. In some cases, receiving a felony conviction could lead to a cessation of benefits even after you are released.

Changes to Your Living Situation

In some cases, changes to your living situation might affect your eligibility for disability benefits. Your benefits may be stopped if you enter or leave an institution such as a halfway house or a nursing home. In some cases, changes to the people that you live with might affect your eligibility or the amount that you receive in disability benefits, such as if you get married and move in with your spouse whose income might affect the benefits that you receive. Bear in mind that if you leave the US for a period of thirty days or more, your SSI benefits will be stopped.

Coming of Age

A child who is in receipt of SSI will need to undergo a condition revaluation once they turn eighteen years of age. The revaluation will be carried out in accordance with the adult SSI standards, which in some cases could cause the benefits to be stopped depending on the SSA’s findings.

What to Do if You Believe Your Benefits Shouldn’t Have Been Stopped

In many cases, there is a valid reason for SSI or SSD benefits to be stopped, and you might agree with the findings, such as if you are earning a substantial amount of money from employment or your condition has improved enough to enable you to work without relying on disability benefits for your income. However, in some situations you might believe that your benefits should not have been stopped for any reason. Whether you do not own the assets that have been used as a reason to stop the benefits or do not feel that you are no longer disabled and your condition hasn’t improved enough, the best thing to do is contact a legal professional who is experienced in this field to help you fight your case and get the results that you want.

There are many reasons for disability benefits to be stopped. Understanding what they are could help you avoid having your much-needed income terminated.

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One Comment

  1. When my disability changes to ss. will it be lower than disability?

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