Overview of Disability

Disability Back Pay

Disability Requirements

Disability Applications

Disability Advice Tips

How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

SSD Mistakes to avoid

Disability for Mental

What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

Disability through SSA

SSI Disability Benefits

Disability for Children

How do I qualify for it?

Working and Disability

Disability Award Notice

Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

Disability Eligibility

SSD SSI Definitions

Recent Questions

SSDRC Disability Blog

Can you get temporary Social Security disability or SSI benefits?

The simple answer to this question is that Social Security disability and SSI benefits are not short-term disability programs and, thus, do not provide temporary benefits.

Social Security requires that you have to have been unable to earn a substantially gainful income, or that or you expect to be unable to do this for twelve months, due to a mental or medical condition, before you may be potentially entitled to a social security disability or SSI benefit.

Additionally, disability claims usually take time to be processed to a denial or allowance. If your disability claim is denied at the initial application level (first filing), then you will have to appeal the decision. The disability appeals process usually takes a considerable amount of time, with no guarantee that you will be found disabled.

However if you have been awarded Social Security disability benefits, there is nothing in the Social Security regulations that would prevent a disability beneficiary from receiving disability benefits because of a medical or mental condition, and at some point returning to work. In fact, Social Security offers many incentives to encourage disability recipients to return to work.

For instance, there is a nine-month trial work period (these months do not have to be consecutive) in any sixty month period of time, in which disability beneficiaries may return to work without their monthly earnings amount affecting their monthly Social Security benefit.

If the beneficiary is still working at an amount above the SGA (this is known as substantial gainful activity and represents a monetary income amount above which an individual will not qualify to receive disability benefits -- this amount changes annually) limit for that year, then in the tenth month following the nine month trial work period, their Social Security benefit may be suspended.

However, if the disability beneficiary has to stop work at any time during the following thirty-six months (the thirty six month period is known as the extended period of eligibility) due to your medical condition, your benefit will be reinstated immediately.

Finally, even if you have managed to work past the extended period of eligibility, you may qualify to file an expedited reinstatement (without the need for a new disability application) at anytime during the five year period following the month your disability benefit was terminated due to work activity.

If you file an expedited reinstatement you will begin to receive your disability benefit again, however the monthly payments are provisional (upon your medical conditions still being disabling according to Social Security regulations) and will end in six months.

If the state disability agency responsible for Social Security medical determinations has not made a decision in six months, or you are medically denied for the reinstatement of a disability entitlement, provisional payments will stop. As you can see, Social Security or SSI disability is not meant to be a short term disability program and does not provide temporary benefits, however there may be situations in which an individual may actually only need to receive disability benefits for a short time.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

Social Security Temporary Disability - Can I get temporary benefits?
Can you get temporary Social Security disability or SSI benefits?
A question regarding Temporary Social Security Disability Benefits and closed periods
Is it possible to file for Temporary Disability Income through Social Security?
Can you get Social Security Disability or SSI for a short period of time, i.e. Temporary Disability?
What Conditions Qualify For Social Security Disability?
How do you get Social Security Disability?

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria