Watch Your Step: How To Avoid Getting On The Wrong Side Of Social Security

When you are no longer able to work at your job because of a medical condition, the Social Security Administration (SSA) provides a valuable financial resource. If you qualify, you can expect to receive a monthly payment, which can at least partially alleviate your inability to earn a paycheck. The process for applying for these benefits can be confusing, however, and it's surprisingly easy to run afoul of the various rules and regulations both when you apply and later on when you are receiving benefits, Read on to learn more.

Be honest when describing the symptoms of your medical condition: While this is not a good time to minimize your symptoms, it's also a bad idea to purposely exaggerate your state of health for the purposes of getting benefits. Give your doctor a complete picture of your condition, and be ready to explain how your condition is preventing you from attending to your usual work. Be aware that the SSA can ask that you be examined by a doctor of their choosing, and that continuing disability reviews are conducted after you are approved for benefits.

Be accurate when describing your education level: When approving benefits, the SSA does take into consideration how much education and work experience you have; it helps them understand how likely you are to be able to be trained to do other work. Since the SSA will conduct an investigation into your background, it's best to be upfront and get qualified based on accurate information.

Give the SSA a correct income amount each month. You can still earn some money each month and still get benefits, but there is more to the issue than just dollars and cents. Under the current cost of living tables, you can earn up to $1,170 a month, as long as you report it to the SSA and that the money you earn is not doing essentially the same work that you were doing when you became disabled. For example, if you qualified for benefits because of carpal tunnel syndrome, which made it impossible to do your clerical job, you cannot now earn money writing for a blog. You could, however, get a job that does not require the constant use of your wrists and hands.

Let the SSA know about changes in your living situation: Part of the application process is to explain your marital status and how many people live in your home. When changes occur, you must inform the SSA right way, particularly when that change involves change in income, such as marrying or taking on a roommate. Contact a lawyer, like Scott E. Shaffman Attorney At Law, for more help.

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