Many of us find great satisfaction and pride in our employment. Those with disabilities who must give up their job could feel disappointed that they cannot provide for themselves and their families in the way they used to. So, if their medical condition starts to improve, they may want to test the waters of working again. But can they do so without immediately losing their Social Security disability benefits?
The “Ticket to Work” program
The Social Security Administration recognizes that some people with SSD benefits may want to try working again but may be unsure if they will ultimately be able to handle a job given their health condition. For this reason, the SSA has a program called “Ticket to Work.”
In this program, you can try out working without immediately losing your SSD benefits. As long as you make “timely progress” in your work plan, the SSA will not review your health condition. You can continue receiving benefits until you reach a point of substantial gainful activity.
What if working does not work out?
If your benefits do ultimately end, and you find yourself disabled and unable to work again, you have 5 years to request a reinstatement of your benefits without having to go through the entire application process again. During this time, you can receive cash benefits for up to 6 months while the SSA decides whether you qualify for benefits again.
So, you may be able to test the waters of working again without immediately losing your SSD benefits. If your benefits are stopped and you find you cannot work, you can pursue SSD benefits once more without having to go through the entire application process again. This can help you decide if going back to work is right for you.