Receiving Social Security disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA) is a privilege, not a right. When you are fortunate enough to successfully obtain Social Security disability benefits from the government, you will also be required to shoulder some responsibilities and obligations in exchange for the benefits you receive.
An Obligation To Report Changes To The SSA
Social Security disability benefit recipients have a legal obligation to report changes in their status to the SSA. Changes could include the following:
- Name change
- Address change
- Income increase or decrease
- Return to work or are offered an opportunity to be involved in the Ticket to Work program
- New child enters your family (since your dependents could be eligible for benefits as well)
- Change to your banking information (if you receive your benefits as a direct deposit)
- Change in the resources or assets owned by yourself, your spouse or your dependents
- Change in eligibility for other benefit programs—i.e., you have become eligible to receive benefits from other sources
- Warrant has been issued for your arrest, you have been convicted of a crime, or you have violated your parole or probation
- Marriage, divorce or separation
- Change in living situation, i.e., from living on your own to living in a long term care facility, you enter an institution or nursing home, or you are incarcerated
- Change in disability status
It is important to report status changes to the SSA because changes to your status could have an impact on the amount of benefits you receive. For instance, getting married changes the eligibility requirements for Supplemental Security Income and could increase the amount of benefits you are entitled to. Alternatively, your change in status could reduce your benefit amount. For example, if your income increases, you may become ineligible for Supplemental Security Income.
Changes In Social Security Benefits Status
It is important to report to the SSA truthfully when there is a change in your disability status. There are some disabilities that can get better over time, and some people make recoveries over their disabilities. Changes in your disability status could have an impact on your:
- Social Security disability benefits paid out under the Social Security Disability Insurance program
- Supplemental Security Income benefits
- Eligibility for disability benefits—i.e., your Social Security disability benefits may be terminated due to the change in your disability status
- Retirement benefits
A failure to truthfully report a change in your disability status could constitute fraud, and you can get into serious trouble with the law if you are caught receiving benefits by saying you are disabled when you in fact are not disabled. If it is discovered that you lied about your disability status, or that you supplied the SSA with false information, you will lose your benefits and could suffer other consequences.
Reporting A Change In Status
If you need to report a change in your status to the SSA you can do so over the phone, by mail, or in person at a local Social Security office branch. You are required to report the change as soon as possible.
Contact Us For Assistance
When you need help deciding if you have had a change in your circumstances that requires reporting, you can contact one of the experienced Mount Pleasant Social Security disability attorneys at Klok Law Firm, LLC. We can help you understand what needs to be done to properly report your status change. Contact us today for a free consultation.