Tag: SSDI

Will I Get a Coronavirus Stimulus Check if I’m on Disability?

Will I Get a Coronavirus Stimulus Check if I’m on Disability?

coronavirus stimulus check

Economic impact payments began posting to some Americans’ bank accounts on April 13, 2020, marking the first wave of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES).

With more than 16 million Americans out of a job in just the past month, many households are eagerly awaiting their coronavirus stimulus check. The economic stimulus seems simple at first glance—as long as you make under $75,000 a year (or under $150,000 if you file taxes jointly), you’re guaranteed a $1,200 check, correct?

Unfortunately, it’s a little more complicated than that. Trying to understand whether or not you’re eligible to receive the stimulus provided by the CARES Act when you also receive social security disability benefits can be confusing. To help clear things up, Social Security Disability Advocates USA has created this helpful guide to coronavirus stimulus checks.

I’m On Disability. Will I Receive a Coronavirus Stimulus Check?

Yes, you are eligible to receive an economic impact payment even if you are receiving SSDI benefits. The only exception to this is if you receive social security disability, but are still being claimed as a dependent by someone else. Your payment may also be reduced if you have additional income that contributes to a yearly income more than $75,000. 

In addition to a standard $1,200 payment, those receiving disability benefits are eligible to receive an additional $500 for each child who is under the age of 17, provided that they live with you for more than half of the year.

Will I Receive a Payment Even Though I Didn’t File a Tax Return?

You do not need to have filed a tax return in the past two years in order to qualify for the coronavirus stimulus check. The IRS will automatically send you a payment. 

However, please note that in order to receive the $500 payment for dependent children, you will need to either file (or have filed) your taxes for 2018 or 2019. Alternatively, you can submit non-filer information to the IRS to ensure that you receive the proper payment.

Will I Receive a Paper Check or Direct Deposit?

If you are currently receiving monthly SSDI benefits, your coronavirus stimulus check will be sent to you in whatever form you receive your ongoing benefits. If your benefits automatically deposit in your bank account, your economic impact payment will also be directly deposited into the same account.

If you still receive a monthly mailed check for your disability benefits, your economic stimulus check will be mailed to the same address where you receive your SSDI check. The Social Security Administration strongly encourages SSDI recipients to sign up for direct deposit to prevent payment delays and theft. 

If you need to update or change your mailing or banking information, you can do so using your My Social Security account or by calling 1-800-772-1213.

When Will My Coronavirus Stimulus Check Arrive?

The IRS is expected to begin distributing checks electronically beginning on April 13, 2020. These payments will likely be distributed over several waves in the coming weeks. By April 17, the IRS should be debuting a new tracking tool called Get My Payment. This web portal will allow people to track when their economic stimulus check will be arriving and update their address or direct deposit information if they have not received their payment already.

The IRS is expected to begin mailing out paper checks in early May, beginning with low-income beneficiaries.

I’m Applying for Disability Benefits. Where Can I Get Help?

With recent SSA office closures, getting help with checking your SSDI application status or appealing your denial is more complicated. For the ultimate disability secrets and help with your individual case, contact our legal team at Social Security Disability Advocates USA. 

You can reach us by calling 602-952-3200, speaking with a live representative via our LiveChat feature, or by submitting the details of your case using our contact form. Contact us today to get help applying for the benefits you deserve!

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, 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.
Are Social Security Disability Benefits Taxable?

Are Social Security Disability Benefits Taxable?

disability and taxes

Filing taxes can be confusing. It can be even more confusing when you receive social security disability benefits. Find out more about disability and taxes from Social Security Disability Advocates USA.

In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the deadline to file your 2019 tax return has been extended to July 15, 2020.

Disability and Taxes: What You Should Know

If you receive social security disability benefits, you may be wondering if your benefits count as income for tax purposes. Read on to find out everything you need to know about disability and taxes, brought to you by the experienced representatives at Social Security Disability Advocates.

Is Disability Considered Earned Income?

Social security disability benefits are distributed monthly, usually in the form of direct deposit. In this way, disability is income. But when it comes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), all income is not treated the same. For taxation purposes, the IRS distinguishes between two kinds of income: earned and unearned. Earned income includes the wages, salaries, or tips one gets from employment or self-employment. 

Other types of income, including child support, alimony, retirement income, and disability benefits are all considered unearned income. In short, although disability benefits are income, the way the federal government taxes this income differs from traditional earned income.

Do I Have To Pay Taxes On Disability Benefits?

The Social Security Administration (SSA) reports that only about one third of SSDI recipients ultimately pay taxes on their benefits each year. Virtually no beneficiaries who receive Supplemental Security Income will pay taxes on these benefits, as they are already designated for low-income individuals.

To put it simply, almost all income—including disability benefits—can be subject to taxation. However, whether or not you’ll be required to pay taxes on your disability benefits depends on the following key factors.

Additional Income

You will only be required to pay federal taxes on your disability income if your total income exceeds the threshold limit set by the federal government. You can calculate your total income by adding half the amount of your disability benefits to any additional income. The current threshold if you file individually is $25,000 annually.

The portion of your disability income that is subject to taxation depends on by how much your total income exceeds the federal threshold. If your total income is between $25,000 and $34,000, you can expect a maximum of 50% of your disability income to be considered taxable. If your total income exceeds $34,000, up to 85% of your disability benefits may be taxable. 

Marital Status

If you are married and/or are filing jointly, you are subject to a slightly higher income threshold of $32,000 annually between you and your spouse. When filing jointly, you may still only count half of your disability benefits towards your total income.

If you and your partner have a total income between $32,000 and $44,000, up to 50% of your disability income may be taxed. If you and your partner’s total income exceeds $44,000, as much as  85% of your SSDI benefits may be taxed.

Note: The amount of tax you’ll actually pay on your disability benefits (and additional income) is determined by your marginal tax rate. For example, an individual whose total income is mid-range (between $25,000 and $34,000) would likely only pay between a 15% to 25% tax rate on benefits, while those earning above $34,000 could possibly pay a 35% tax rate on their benefits. 

Where You Live

Your state’s tax laws have some bearing on whether or not you’ll pay taxes on your SSDI benefits. While many states automatically do not tax social security, thirteen states have exceptions to this rule. Generally speaking, these taxes act similarly with regard to federal income thresholds.

Need Help With Social Security Disability Benefits?

Knowing what to expect when it comes to disability and taxes can be confusing. Our social security disability advocates have years of experience assisting clients in obtaining the disability benefits they deserve. 

For more on the ultimate disability secrets the Social Security Administration doesn’t want you to know about and how to get the most monthly compensation for your disability, contact Social Security Disability Advocates USA. 

Not sure how to check on your SSDI application status? We’ve got you covered. You can reach us by phone at 602-952-3200, visit our office during regular business hours, chat online with an representative, or submit the details of your case using our secure contact form.

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, 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.
Has Your SSDI Stopped?

Has Your SSDI Stopped?

SSDI stopped
Has your SSDI stopped? Call SSDA USA today!

So, your Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) stopped. You’re probably wondering, “How could this happen?” Well, you’re not alone, and Social Security Disability Advocates USA is here to help.

There are a multitude of factors that influence your SSDI, everything from medical improvement to incarceration. It can be overwhelming to keep track of all the variables, so let us from Social Security Disability Advocates USA clarify some of the key issues surrounding your SSDI and explore some plausibilities for why your SSDI stopped.

You Went Back to Work

Going back to work is one of the most likely reasons for the reduction or cancellation of your SSDI benefits. SSDI requires that you not earn an amount equal to or above the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) limit, which in 2019 is $1,220 per month for non-blind people or $2,040 per month for blind people.

Earning the SGA or above will initiate a nine-month trial work period in which you will still receive SSDI benefits. If you continue to engage in SGA after the nine-month trial work period, you will no longer be considered disabled, and your benefits will stop.

If you are unable to work after your SSDI stopped, you don’t have to reapply for benefits all over again. You can apply for an Expedited Reinstatement (EXR) of benefits. This is so people who unsuccessfully tried to go back to work can more readily reinstate their benefits if they lost their job after their trial work period.

Be careful, though! If you are working but earning below the SGA, the Social Security Administration (SSA) may still determine that the fact you are working means you are no longer disabled. The SGA is just a definite no-go zone for people working; you can still see a reduction or a cancellation of your benefits even if you do not engage in SGA. Of course, individual cases vary, so contact SSDA USA if you have any questions about your SSDI.

You Reached Retirement Age

The SSA prevents you from receiving disability and retirement benefits concurrently. Therefore, once you reach retirement age, your SSDI benefits will stop and you will be eligible for retirement benefits. You do not have to apply for Social Security retirement benefits right away, however. Delaying your retirement benefits can be extremely beneficial for many people. Just keep in mind, though, that your SSDI will stop once you reach retirement age. You should plan ahead for this and save up as much as you can to prepare for a change in your Social Security Benefits.

You Were Incarcerated or Institutionalized

Incarceration or institutionalization can suspend your benefits until you are free again. You will see a suspension of your SSDI benefits after 30 days of incarceration unless you willingly participate in a rehabilitation program. You should see a reinstatement of your SSDI in the month following your release.

Sometimes, you will see a cancellation of your SSDI even without any incarceration. For example, a felony conviction will automatically cancel your SSDI benefits.

Your Dependent’s Benefits Stopped

If you are receiving SSDI based on someone else’s earning record, your benefits may stop if certain changes occur. For example, if you are a child receiving benefits from your parent’s SSDI, your benefits could stop when you turn 18 or get married. Dependent’s benefits are usually different from primary benefits, so different rules apply. If you are a dependent, you should always be aware of what will affect your benefits.

Your Condition Improved

So, your condition has seen a medical improvement. That’s great, right? Well, it’s tricky.

If your condition sees a “medical improvement,” as the SSA calls it, your Social Security benefits could stop. This is because if your condition sees a medical improvement, the SSA may no longer consider you disabled.

Now, what is a medical improvement? According to SSA, “Medical improvement is any decrease in the medical severity of your impairment(s) which was present at the time of the most recent favorable medical decision that you were disabled or continued to be disabled. A determination that there has been a decrease in medical severity must be based on improvement in the symptoms, signs, and/or laboratory findings associated with your impairment(s).”

Now this may sound all fancy, but it simply means this: if your condition has improved to the point that you can work or potentially earn SGA, you will no longer be considered disabled. This means that medical improvement does not necessarily mean you will no longer be considered disabled. If you can prove that you cannot work and cannot earn SGA despite your medical improvement, you will still likely receive your SSDI benefits.

Wondering Why Your SSDI Stopped?

Contact Social Security Disability Advocates today! We are professionals, and we work tirelessly to address all your concerns. Call us anytime at 602-952-3200. Alternatively, you can contact us online or check out our LiveChat feature. Don’t let your questions bother you any longer. Contact SSDA USA today!

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, 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.

Are You Getting Enough from your Social Security Disability Insurance?

Are You Getting Enough from your Social Security Disability Insurance?

how much ssdi
Wondering how much SSDI you should be receiving? Contact SSDA USA today!

Many people receiving Social Security Disability Insurance assume they are receiving the correct amount. Usually, they are. But there are a variety of factors that can influence how much SSDI you receive.

Here’s the gist:

It’s impossible to know right off the bat how much an individual will make from their SSDI. There are many factors to consider, everything from work history to disability status. Because of this, let us from Social Security Disability Advocates USA explain some common factors that affect how much SSDI you and your family can receive.

Employment Income

To qualify for SSDI, an individual must have a condition that 1) will result in death, or 2) has lasted or will last for no less than a year, and 3) prevents them from working above the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) limit (which, in 2018, is $1,180 or $1,970 for blind people).

You must consult your total work credits and work earnings to calculate your monthly SSDI payment. For most people, 40 work credits (approximately 10 years of work) is the prerequisite for collecting SSDI benefits. Younger people do not need as many credits, however. When calculating SSDI, SSA agents use a formula on your work earnings to figure out how much SSDI you will receive monthly. Check out this SSDI calculator for more info.

If you earn a monthly amount equal to or greater than the SGA, your benefits will likely stop. Working part-time and earning below the SGA will not necessarily stop your benefits, but you could see a significant reduction.

Medical Improvement

The entire point of SSDI is to aid disabled individuals. If you see any kind of medical improvement, you could see a reduction or even a halt of your benefits. A medical improvement is any kind of improvement that would allow you to go back to the work you were doing before, or even some new kind of work.

Incarceration

Crime charges and incarceration for more than 30 days will result in the reduction or cancellation of your benefits. You will be able to reinstate your benefits once you leave, but you will not receive any Social Security benefits while you are in jail/prison.

Family Changes

Sometimes, certain arrangements in the family can reduce or cancel benefits. For example, if you are a dependent receiving SSDI based on your parent’s record, your benefits will likely end if you turn 18 or get married. If you are receiving SSDI benefits based on your own record, however, getting married will not affect your SSDI benefits. Reaching retirement age also cancels your SSDI benefits, since you cannot receive Social Security disability benefits and Social Security retirement benefits in tandem.

Still Wondering How Much SSDI You Qualify For?

If you still have questions about Social Security, Social Security Disability Advocates USA is here to help! We work tirelessly to help you with any concerns you have, so call us anytime at 602-952-3200. Additionally, you can contact us online and utilize our LiveChat feature. Don’t wonder anymore about Social Security. Contact us today!

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, 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.

Holidays and Your SSDI (What you Need to Know)

Holidays and Your SSDI (What you Need to Know)

what can social security money be used for
Have questions such as ” What can Social Security money be used for? ” SSDA USA is here to help!

While the Social Security Administration (SSA) does its best to serve retirees, the impoverished, and the disabled, there are so many rules that it can be difficult to understand important information. Questions such as, “ What can social security money be used for? ” and “ How does work affect my social security? ” are quite common, especially during the holidays.

Here’s the bottom line:

Social Security isn’t as complex as it seems. Once you unravel the thread, the rules of Social Security are much easier to decipher. So, allow us from Social Security Disability Advocates USA explain the basics to you.

What is Social Security?

Social Security is a federally run program that aids people who are retired, impoverished, or disabled. There are a variety of programs that are run by the Social Security Administration, and they all have distinct rules on how to qualify.

Let’s go over them now:

Social Security Disability Insurance

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is for people who are disabled. The SSA defines “disabled” to mean that 1) You suffer from a condition that is expected to result in death, or 2) That has lasted or is expected to last for 12 months, and 3) You are unable to earn above the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) limit.

The SGA for 2018 is $1,180 per month, or $1,970 if you are blind. For 2019, the SGA is $1,220 or $2,040 if you are blind.

Earning above the SGA will result in the loss of your SSDI benefits.

To qualify for SSDI, generally, you must have earned 40 work credits. If you earned the maximum number of credits (4) per year, then that equates to 10 years of work. Younger people need to have earned fewer work credits, generally.

Supplemental Security Income

Supplemental Security Income is for people with limited resources who are blind, disabled (still according to the SSA definition of disabled), or age 65 or older. There are no work credits required, and qualifying for this program is entirely need based. It is possible to qualify for both SSI and SSDI.

Retirement Benefits

Retirement benefits can be collected as early as age 62. However, you’re usually better off waiting until your full retirement age (anywhere from 65-67). This is because the SSA will reduce your benefits if you retire before your full retirement age, so be careful when you choose to retire.

Before you collect retirement benefits, you must have earned 40 work credits. The SSA uses a formula to calculate how much you will receive. In short, the more you earned during the time you were working, the more you will receive.

When Do I Get my Social Security?

When you get your Social Security payment depends on a few factors. 1) The type of Social Security you qualify for, and 2) Your birthday.

If you’re receiving SSDI, your birthday determines when you will receive your payments:

  •         1-10: Second Wednesday of the month
  •         11-20: Third Wednesday of the month
  •         21-31: Fourth Wednesday of the month

When Wednesdays occur on federal legal holidays, you will be paid the Tuesday before.

This means that for December, 2018, people born on the 21st or later will receive their benefits after Christmas, so prepare in advance for holiday shopping!

If you’re receiving SSI, you should receive your payment on the first of the month. If the first of the month is a federal legal holiday, you will receive your payment the day before, unless the first is a Monday. In that case, you will receive your payment the Friday before the first.

If you receive both SSDI and SSI, you should receive your payments on the third of the month. If the third falls on a weekend, you will receive payment the Friday before.

You should also keep in mind that Social Security benefits become available to you the month after you become eligible, usually. For example, if you become eligible in November, 2018, you will not receive your benefits until December, 2018.

How Do I Receive my Benefits?

The Social Security Administration stopped mailing paper checks effective March 2013. Because of this, there are now two new methods you can choose from:

Direct Deposit

You can choose to have your Social Security payments deposited directly to your bank account. This is a highly popular option since you don’t have to worry about losing your check or that funds will not be transferred if you are out of town.

Direct Express® Debit Card

The alternative to direct deposit is reloading your Direct Express® debit card. This card works anywhere that accepts MasterCard®. You can also use this card to get cash back from grocery stores, or to purchase money orders.

How Does Seasonal Work Affect My Social Security?

Seasonal work can affect your SSDI or SSI payments, depending on a few factors. It is important to first note that seasonal work does contribute to your Social Security work credits.

If you have SSDI, earning above the SGA limit can reduce or entirely cancel your benefits. However, there is a safety net: the trial work period. The trial work period is a nine-month period in which you still receive your SSDI benefits while working. This is to encourage disabled individuals to go back to work, if possible. If your work attempt is unsuccessful, or you were let go because of your disability, you will still continue to receive your SSDI benefits. In addition, if you continue to earn above the SGA after nine months, you will no longer be considered disabled, and your SSDI benefits will stop.

If you have SSI, earning above certain income limits, or possessing above certain asset limits, can reduce or cancel your benefits. For 2019, the individual income limit for SSI is $771 per month, and the asset limit is $2000 ($3000 if a couple). Unlike SSDI, SSI does not offer a trial work period, and the moment you obtain SGA, your benefits will stop. Certain things such as receiving free food or shelter could be counted as income (called in-kind income), and a variety of other things (such as parental or spousal income) could affect SSI eligibility.

What Can Social Security Money be Used For?

Many people wonder “ What can Social Security money be used for? ”Generally, there are few restrictions on what you can use your Social Security funds for. Restrictions include purchasing anything illegal, for example. However, just because there are few restrictions doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be wise with your money.

You should always spend your money on necessities before luxuries! Use your Social Security money to pay for food, your rent, your utilities, and other essentials before purchasing luxury items. In addition, purchasing luxury items can cause you to lose your benefits. For example, the asset limit amount is $2,000, so if you have more than that in the form of assets, your benefits will stop.

Have Questions About Social Security?

Contact Social Security Disability Advocates USA today! We at SSDA pride ourselves in our commitment to helping you with all your Social Security needs. If you have any questions about your Social Security, call us anytime at 602-952-3200. Alternatively, you can contact us online or check out our LiveChat feature.

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, 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.