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Can veterans work and receive SSDI benefits?

Tennessean veterans are likely used to working. These hard-working individuals have served their country honorably. Sometimes, due to war-related injuries, however, they may be in need of Social Security disability benefits. Sometimes injuries may prevent veterans from working entirely, but other veterans may be able to, and want to, work.

Fortunately, the Social Security Administration has programs in place to encourage veterans to work while still receiving SSDI benefits. Under the SSA's work incentives program, a veteran can begin to work while still receiving SSDI benefits monthly.

Often veterans are transitioning into an unfamiliar line of work. Through various work incentives, such as the Ticket to Work program, veterans may be eligible for assistance with training, rehabilitation and education to assist them in their chosen field. There are other work incentives for which veterans might qualify. Specifically, in a trial work period, a veteran can work for at least nine months, and the months do not have to be consecutive, and still receive full SSDI benefits, as long as he or she notifies the SSA of the work and continues to have a disabling impairment. A veteran may still receive benefits following a trial work period for up to 36 months, in what is known as an extended period of eligibility, as well.

It is important to note that a veteran who has a job must let the SSA know about his or her job, including information regarding when he or she starts or stops work, plus any changes in hours of work, job duties and rate of pay, as these may affect a veteran's SSDI benefits. However, veterans should be aware that, even when receiving full pay, they may still be eligible for SSDI benefits.

Veterans who have questions regarding SSDI benefits and work activity may wish to consult with an attorney for guidance.

Source: Social Security Administration, "Information For Wounded Warriors And Veterans Who Have a Compensation Rating of 100% Permanent & Total (P&T)," accessed May 6, 2016

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