What is the Social Security Red Book?

What is the Social Security Red Book?

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The Social Security Administration (SSA) was established to help provide financial assistance to workers that were injured. In addition, it intended to assist retirees or those in desperate financial need. As a result, there are a lot of rules and regulations to ensure that those who are collecting benefits from the SSA, whether it be Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, aren’t just taking advantage of the system. The SSA Blue Book and the SSA Red Book list many of the rules and regulations.

What is the SSA Blue Book?

The Blue Book contains the various physical and mental conditions and symptoms of those conditions that are considered disabling by the SSA. Essentially, you can figure out whether your condition will be eligible for SSDI.

If your condition matches any of the conditions listed, then you chance of qualifying increases. However, you may still qualify only for the symptoms you experience.

However, the Blue Book can be a bit complicated for the general person to read. It was not designed for the public, but more as a reference for medical professionals and Social Security disability professionals. It’s also worth noting that just because your exact symptoms or conditions aren’t listed doesn’t mean you’ll automatically be ineligible.

The SSA will take into consideration symptoms similar to those listed. Additionally, they will consider how the combined symptoms of two different conditions could have an even greater negative impact on your ability to work.

What is the SSA Red Book?

Technically, if you qualify for SSDI benefits, it means that you are unable to perform your previous job. Or, any similar jobs to those jobs that you’ve worked in the past because of your disability. If you go back to work, it means your condition did not prevent you from being able to work, which negates the point of SSDI benefits. However, this does not mean that you can’t work at all.

You can still earn additional income. However, you cannot work full-time. Also, you cannot work on the same level of intensity as prior to your disability. There are a lot of rules and regulations regarding the ability to work while collecting SSDI benefits, and these can be found in the SSA Red Book.

The SSA Red Book regularly updates every year. The following are the updated rules and regulations that you should be aware of for 2018:

  • Income limits.

    There’s a limit to the amount of money you can earn every month. If you earn more, the SSA will assume your condition is no longer preventing you from working. The income limit changes from year to year based on inflation. Currently, it’s $1,180 for non-blind individuals and $1,970 for blind individuals.

  • Trial work period limits.

    When you gain employment, a trial work period equates to if you make $850 a month. During a trial work period, you can still collect benefits. It’s a period in which you’ll test out whether your disability has improved enough so that you can go back to work.

  • Income reports.

    As of the end of 2017, you can now use the My Social Security platform to report your wages to the SSA online.

It’s worth noting that in addition to information about working while collecting SSDI benefits, the SSA Red Book also includes information about working with SSI benefits and about Medicare insurance.

Do you have questions regarding the SSA Red Book or Blue Book? Or, do you need professional guidance determining whether or not your condition is eligible for SSDI benefits? Then be sure to contact us at Social Security Disability Advocates USA. You can schedule a free consultation by calling us 24 hours a day, seven days a week at (602) 952-3200.

The information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute a representative-client relationship.

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