Can I Lose My Social Security Benefits?

Getting Social Security benefits can be a long and arduous journey. When a disability is stopping you from working, the stress of trying to make ends meet is enough on its own, but then you face challenges from Social Security itself, the agency that’s supposed to be helping you. One of these challenges is the prospect of losing your benefits.

How Social Security benefits can be lost

Applicants who apply for disability, regardless of how severe their condition is, face a series of rejections, appeals, and hearings that can feel endless. During this time, they must gather and maintain documents, as well as arguments, to support their claim that they are unable to work.

The good news is that Social Security benefits, once granted, can only be taken away under a few circumstances:

  • You no longer have a disability. Some qualifying conditions, like cancer, may go into remission or even be cured. In these cases, you’ll be considered ineligible for future payments unless the disease returns.
  • You still have a disability, but you’re able to work. If you make enough money for long enough, Social Security will eventually terminate your benefits, even if you still technically have the condition. However, you may be able to have them reinstated quickly if your condition worsens.
  • Your application contained false statements. While this is unlikely, it should be mentioned that benefits can be revoked if an applicant is found to have lied.
  • You receive SSI and you’re over the income or asset limit. If you work while receiving SSI, you may be expected to pay some or all of your recent payments. However, this only applies to payments you received in the month when you started working, not payments received before that. And if you lose your job and your assets drop below $2000, you can start getting benefits again.

Why you shouldn’t worry

Losing eligibility is a common fear among people who receive Social Security disability benefits. And it’s understandable, because for most people, these benefits are the only source of income available, and they weren’t easy to get.

While it’s important to keep good records and accurately report changes in your condition, you don’t have to live in fear of losing your benefits.

If you have questions about how your eligibility may be impacted by life changes, we can answer them. Katherine is an experienced disability attorney who represents people at all steps in the process. She’s helped many people get and keep the benefits they’re entitled to, and she can help you, too. Call, email, or text us today!

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