John L. Keefe
Many New England SSA disability beneficiaries find themselves thinking about going back to work. Maybe you are one of them. But this can be scary; you may fear that you will find yourself unable to do the work and lose your benefits entirely, leaving you in financial distress. Here are some of the most common questions people have about the SSA Ticket to Work program that may help you decide if the program would work for you:
- Will I lose my benefits if I decide to try the program? In short, no. You keep your benefits until you begin earning wages above the limit set for SSDI or SSI. Also, the SSA cannot initiate a medical “Continuing Disability Review” while you are part of the Ticket Program.
- Will I lose my medical coverage? As long as you continue to receive benefits, your medical coverage will remain intact. Also, there are work incentives that allow you to continue to receive coverage even if you start earning enough to stop receiving benefits. Medicare and Medicaid can also continue if certain requirements are met.
- If I start working and stop receiving benefits, then have to quit working because of my disability, will I have to apply all over again? No. If this happens, you can request that your benefits start again. You do not have to submit another application. Ultimately, the SSA will decide if your benefits will be reinstated, but in the meantime, they can give you six months of temporary benefits. A work incentive called “Expedited Reinstatement” will allow you to ask for your benefits to start again for up to five years after you stop receiving them.
It is never easy to give up a “bird in the hand” when you decide to try working while receiving New England SSA disability benefits. And, the Ticket to Work program is certainly not for everyone.
The Massachusetts disability legal experts at Keefe Disability Law urge you to weigh your options carefully. We also invite you to call us toll free at 888-904-6847 with any questions you may have about applying for or appealing a New England SSA disability decision. We are here to support you.
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