Do you think you could support two children and yourself by making only $9 per hour at a part-time job in Minneapolis? Even with inexpensive housing and cutting other costs like owning a car and going out to eat, making only $9 an hour at a part-time job may make it extremely challenging for families to make ends meet each month.
One woman who is in this very situation has had difficulty making ends meet over the past few years, but she is also disabled and has been able to collect Social Security Disability Insurance payments since she cannot work full-time. Both of her children also suffer disabilities, and due to the family's limited financial resources, the woman has also been able to collect Supplemental Security Income payments for her children to help cover basic living expenses.
But the woman's disability payments were recently suspended by the Social Security Administration. The SSA claims that the woman has not been properly reporting her income from her part-time job, and as a result, her benefits have allegedly been miscalculated for years.
Folks who are disabled may still work and earn income from jobs while also collecting disability benefits. However, income from jobs must be reported to the appropriate agencies and disability recipients typically cannot earn more than $700 to $1,000 per month from their jobs, otherwise their benefits may be compromised.
The woman whose benefits have been suspended claims that she reported her income from her part-time job to the local office that handles SSI claims. She said that she assumed the information about her income was also being passed on to the SSA for calculating her SSDI benefits. However, the woman was apparently supposed to report her income to the SSA by filing an annual estimation of income report in addition to the reports she had already been filing for SSI benefits. Now the SSA is claiming that it overpaid the woman by more than $34,000.
As a result of this miscalculation in benefits, the woman has not been able to receive SSI or SSDI payments since November. She is now hoping to resolve this problematic issue by bringing her case to an administrative law judge. She may be able to have her debt cleared and she may also be able to begin receiving SSI payments again for her children. She plans on looking for another part-time job since she doesn't want to completely give up working.
Source: News Chief, "Miscalculation Threatens Family's SSI Benefits," Eric Pera, Jan. 27, 2013
- Our firm provides counsel to folks who are interested in applying for Social Security disability benefits as well as those who are eligible for disability benefits but also want to obtain part-time work. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our page about working while receiving Social Security disability benefits.