I’m on Social Security Disability (SSDI) and I’m thinking of going back to Work: Part 4-Record Keeping

The decisions have been made. You are going back to work. You will be making greater than $840 in 2017. What happens next? The Social Security Administration (SSA) will send you a form to determine what you can do. On this form, my advice is to be as detailed as possible. Do Not Lie on this form. Also make sure that you get it back to the SSA by the date requested.

Please pay attention to what I am about to write? Any correspondence you have with the SSA regarding your return to work, you must do one of these two things. 1) Bring the document to your local SSA office and get a receipt or 2) Mail the document to SSA registered return receipt. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT simply drop it in the mail.

Create a folder for yourself and label it SSDI Return to Work. Any document that you send to SSA I urge you will make a copy of and place the copy into this folder. I cannot stress to you how important this is. The SSA is a massive organization.  Assume that everything you send to them will get lost or misplaced.  If that happens and it does often it is on you that you sent SSA the appropriate information at the appropriate time. That is why record keeping is so important. If you take to document to the local SSA again make sure you get a receipt. Take that receipt and staple it to the copy of the document you made and put that document with the receipt into the folder.  If you mail the document to them, take the receipt from the post office and staple that to the copy at home and place it in your folder. When you receive the green signature card back from the postal service, staple that green card to the copy and the receipt. Please say you understand?

When working either through the Trial Work Period or the Ticket to Work Program, you must send your monthly pay stubs to the SSA. That is right! Every month you need to send your pay stubs. This is important because it lets the SSA know when your benefits will stop. Your pay stub is a document and you need to make copies and follow the procedure I outlined above. IMPORTANT!

I know at this point you must be thinking to yourself that I’m going overboard. The answer to that is yes, even for those whose transition back to work and off of SSDI goes well there are glitches.

Why do you have to send in all of this information, because it is the law? SSA uses this information to determine when your benefits will stop. The SSA does not want to overpay you. The converse is also true. You do not want to be overpaid with disability benefits. Why, because if you are overpaid disability benefits you will need to repay the SSA.

It is not uncommon for the SSA like I stated above to make mistakes. As a matter of fact, it happened to someone close to me. This person did what I outlined above. The SSA stated they were missing documents. This person factually told the SSA that all the required documents and pay stubs were submitted to them at the appropriate time. They spoke factually because they had copies of every document and pay stub they sent to the SSA and they had receipts of when they sent them and signatures of the people who signed for them. Replacing for the SSA the documents they said they never received wasn’t enough. The SSA informed this person that they were overpaid and needed to return near $2000 to the SSA for disability benefit overpayment. To correct the issue and convince the SSA that there was no over payment, all of the documents were sent along with a timeline highlighting dates sent, receipts and signatures. Only then did the SSA agree that there was no over payment of disability benefits.

I hope this blog helps you? I’ll blog to you next week.

disABLEDperson, Inc.

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