If I get a pension from my job, will my Social Security Disability Check be lowered or taken away?

I was approved for full disability over 10 years ago and received $1500/month. I recently got a letter from my former employer, for whom I worked for almost 30 years, and they gave me paperwork to receive $613 a month in pension. Will my disability be affected by this? Will they take away all the disability, or lower it according to my monthly payment. And what if I want to take the $113K as a lump sum? Thank you so much.

If you are receiving Social Security Disability you can receive your pension monthly or in a lump sum. Social Security Disability is not a need-based disability program, because it is based upon your earnings. Consequently, you can take your pension without the worry of it affecting your Social Security Disability benefits.

From the page:

Social Security Disability does not offset your pension unless your pension is based upon earnings that were not taxed for the purposes of Social Security. In years past, some states, businesses, and companies opted out of the Social Security system. If your pension is based upon non-covered earnings (not taxed), Social Security may offset your disability benefit amount. Generally, individuals who have pensions have no problem receiving their full Social Security Disability benefit because their pension is based upon covered earnings.

If you are receiving a disability pension from an employer or long term disability company, there is a likelihood that they will offset what they pay you each month once you have been approved for Social Security Disability.

If you are receiving a retirement pension from a governmental agency or an employer, it is unlikely that your entitlement to Social Security Disability will cause your retirement pension to be offset (unless the retirement is base non covered earnings, i.e. federal civil service employees). The same is true if you are receiving a military retirement or disability pension.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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