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Ask Tina Your Own Question
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8775
Experience:  JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
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This question is for and I posted this question below to you

Customer Question

This question is for ***** ***** and I posted this question below to you -- but neither you nor anyone else have responded -- thus I am re-posting this question again addressed directly to you. I have been on Social security disability (SSDI) for several years and it has been well over 2 years since last CDR when I was also found to have continuing disability. Now I have decided to try to see if I can work though I am still considered to be disabled. I will be earning over 5k a months -- which is well over the limit. Thus i will be entering into a 9 months trial work period.In one of your previous posts you mentioned ": I usually tell them (clients) anything over $900 should be reported if you are getting close to the 9 month period. If this work is consistent over several months someone in the SSA may decide that you need a CDR and that you may no longer be disabled"My question if I was disabled for over two years - SSDI says that work in itself during the trial period should not trigger CDR -- it seems according to your answer that SSDI does not necessarily follow its own rule and still can trigger CDR because of the work during trial period -- is it true?My second question deals with language in SSA document In this document is says:
"During your trial work period, you will receive your full Social Security benefits regardless of how much you are earning as long as you report your work activity and you continue to have a disabling impairment"and in another place in this documnet it says:
"if you receive Social Security
because of a disability, you or your
representative must tell us right
away if:
• You start or stop work"it seems from this documnet if you do not tell SSA right away that you have started working the SSA may ask back for tbenefitrs you received during trial work - thus it seems that it make sense to report it immediatly when you started working especialy if already have been on disability for over 2 years and CDR should not be triggered.What is wrong with my interpreation -- is it something that SSA does not enforce (such as back payments due to late reportiung of work during trial period) ? Are there any POMS that support this position one way or the other?thank you
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Susan Scott replied 4 months ago.

While there are several regulations regarding working while disabled and trial work periods, it really depends on who gets the information that a person is working and how they implement the regulations. I have seen that some SSA worker will totally stop benefits and create an overpayment based upon little or no information regarding work. I have also seen where a claimant notifies SSA immediately that there is work activity and its two or three years later before any action is taken, causing a huge overpayment. True, SSA is not supposed to count the first 9 months. But often, they do and it is for the claimant to appeal it and eventually go to a judge to get it straight. The problem is, an attorney will usually not help because there will be no backpay to get paid from.

I suggest that you 1. Notify SSA that you have taken a job by hand delivery with a date stamp on the letter or by certified mail.

2. If you are still working in 6 months and it appears that you will continue, notify SSA to stop your checks, the same way.

3. Return any checks you get from SSA after that by hand delivery with a copy noting it was returned and a date stamp. This can be done by certified mail, but better by hand. If you get direct deposit, I suggest a cashiers check. Do not ever assume that the worker at the SSA office will ever do anything as expected. While there are plenty of wonderful employees at the SSA offices, they are bombarded with documents and quite often things fall through the cracks.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Susan,thank you very much for answering. I am glad I found you -- as you have a lot of experience in inner workings of SSA. I will probably have several independent questions submitted to you (paid separately) -- as I have a bunch of questions in regards ***** ***** SSA. Just a follow up to my question above -- it seems that based on what I copied from SSA bulletins above -- SSA can take back disability payments during trial work period if I do not notify them right away of the start of my trial work period. Can SSA really do this? -- as I could not find anything POMS regarding this? Are there any other potential penalties for late reporting of trial work period? If I send a letter or fax to SSA regarding start of trial work -- how often they take actions on this letter (based on your experience)?