Social Security Lawyer Talks About Work Attempts
Did you know that the Social Security Administration not only allows a person to work while their application for benefits is pending, but encourages it? As a starting point, the Social Security Administration prefers that people work instead of receiving disability benefits. A working person contributes taxes, supports their families and helps the economy. A working person, statistically, will also live longer than a person receiving disability. This is not to say that the SSA begrudges anyone who is disabled receiving their due, but as an economic choice, it is better to have people working.
So, the Social Security Administration rules and regulations allow for trial work periods. If you apply for benefits, you may try to reenter the work force while your application is pending without prejudice to your application if you are unable to continue that work. The rules are contained in the Code of Federal Regulations, 20 CFR Sec. 1592. Under this provision, if you are unable to work for nine consecutive months, then this work will not be evidence that you are able to work. If you work more than 9 consecutive months then the work will be considered in making the disability decision. It is my experience that Administrative Law Judges look favorably on those with failed work attempts, especially in those cases where the judge’s discretion is key to the case. What I mean is if your claim is a “close call”, a failed work attempt may serve to increase the claimant’s credibility and give them the benefit of the doubt.
If you have a claim pending, are not currently represented, and have a question about attempting to work while your application is pending, please give a call. I may be able to answer your question quickly, and give you a little peace of mind.