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What if I receive SSD benefits and would like to work?

There is often a belief that when a Missourian is getting Social Security disability benefits, it automatically implies an inability to work. However, for many recipients of SSD benefits, there is a chance they can eventually get back to work and end their need for SSD. This is where Ticket to Work and various work incentives can be beneficial. Before using Ticket to Work, it is important to understand how the program works and what benefits are available.

With Ticket to Work, the person getting SSD benefits can get training, job referrals, vocational rehabilitation and other forms of employment support. There will be no medical reviews while taking part in Ticket to Work as long as progress is being made in the attempt to get back on the job. There will be a trial work period, an extended period of eligibility, Medicare will continue, and work expenses that are related to the disability will be available.

With the trial work period, the person can work for at least nine months during which time he or she will get the SSD benefits no matter how much is earned provided they work and the disability remains in place. For 2018, a trial work month will be any month in which the person does not earn more than $850 or work more than 80 hours in self-owned business. The extended period of eligibility gives the person 36 months where they can work and get the SSD benefits if the income is not viewed as "substantial" meaning more than $1,180 for 2018 for a non-blind person.

Expedited reinstatement can come about if the benefits stop because of substantial earnings. The person will have five years to ask if the benefits can restart if the condition stops them from working. No new application will be required. The person can receive certain services or items to help with work. For example, the person might need transportation to and from the job via taxi or counseling might be required - the SSD benefits might be able to deduct these from the monthly earnings when determining eligibility.

Not all people who are getting disability benefits will need them forever. They might think they can get back in the workforce, but are not sure that this is the case and are concerned about what will happen to their benefits if they try and fail. Ticket to Work is in place for that reason. For people who are getting SSD benefits and would like to use Ticket to Work or have had an issue after trying to get back to work should consult with an attorney with experience in all aspects of SSD claims.

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