Overview of Disability
Disability Back Pay
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
SSD SSI Definitions
SSDRC authored by
SSDRC Disability Blog
Can You Work and Collect Social Security Disability in North Carolina?
Usually, there is a lot of confusion with regard to work and Social Security disability and SSI. Since Social Security disability and SSI are both total disability programs, many people assume they can do no work if they are collecting benefits, or are considering an application for disability benefits; however that is not true.
If you are filing for Social Security disability (from this point forward, please remember that we are discussing both SSD and SSI as well, even if we just refer to the one program) or you have Social Security disability in North Carolina or any other state, you are able to work but your earnings affect your eligibility to receive or continue collecting disability benefits.
If you are filing for Social Security disability, you will be asked about work that you are currently performing. They—SSA--must evaluate whether or not your earnings are above the Social Security monthly earnings limit or SGA (substantial gainful activity).
Basically, the SGA monthly earnings limit is a monetary amount that Social Security considers to be self-supporting, if you are earning over the limit, you are not disabled under the rules of Social Security disability. Generally, the monthly SGA earnings limit increases each year Social Security gives a cost of living increase.
The SGA amount for the current year, which is a gross earnings amount per month can be be found here: SGA limit. If you are earning over that amount when you file your disability application and you have no special considerations provided by your employer (A special considerations situation is one in which they are paying you the regular pay, but they are accomodating your condition through extra breaks, more absences, or expectation of less productivity) to complete your job, your disability claim will be denied for the performance of SGA.
If your employer states that the special considerations cause your work to be worth fifty percent of a regular employee's work, Social Security will only count your earnings at fifty percent for the purposes of a SGA determination.
Additionally, Social Security will consider work related expenses as a way of reducing your monthly earnings if those expenses are needed to allow you to work with your disability. These expenses must be paid by you and they must be expenses related to your disability (they cannot be expenses that are not paid by you, or expenses that other employees pay).
If you are already receiving Social Security disability benefits in North Carolina, you should be careful about any work activity. The SGA monthly earnings amount will affect your continued eligibility to disability benefits. Actually, Social Security wants you to try to work in the hope that you will find work that you are able to perform so you will no longer need disability benefits.
To that end, they allow you to work nine trial work months in which your earnings or work will not counted against your eligibility to disability benefits. The important thing to remember about trial work months is that they do not have to be consecutive and they can occur at any time during a five year period.
If you are working and earning over SGA in the tenth month, your disability benefits will be suspended for any month you earn over the SGA monthly limit. The tenth month also begins a special thirty-six month period in which you are able to reinstate your disability benefits any time you are earning under the SGA monthly amount.
However, if you are working and earning over SGA in the thirty -seventh month your disability benefits will be terminated. Even if your Social Security disability benefits are terminated because of your work activity, you may be able to restart your benefits through an expedited reinstatement. You must file the expedited reinstatement within five years of the month your Social Security disability benefits were terminated and you must be unable to work or perform SGA level work because of the same disabling condition or conditions that caused you to be initially approved for disability benefits.
You can work and collect Social Security disability benefits in North Carolina or any other state. However, you should contact your local Social Security office if you plan to go back to work, or you have gone back to work. Understanding how work activity affects your eligibility to monthly disability benefits could help you avoid overpayments that result from your return to work.
Return to: Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions
Filing for NC disability benefits
Applying for Disability in North Carolina - How to apply, qualify, and meet filing requirements
Applying for NC disability benefits
More about filing for disability benefits in North Carolina
How to claim disability benefits in North Carolina
What happens on a disability application in North Carolina?
How long will it take to receive NC disability benefits if your application is approved?
Basic questions about disability benefits in North Carolina
How much can you receive in disability backpay in North Carolina?
How far back do you get disability benefits in North Carolina?
Can You Work and Collect Social Security Disability in North Carolina?
How to Get the Status on Your Social Security Disability Claim in North Carolina
How do I get help to win my disability claim in North Carolina?
The disability process in North Carolina
What condition or conditions qualifies for disability in North Carolina?
How long does it take to get through the disability system in North Carolina?
Is it hard to get disability benefits in North Carolina?
What are my chances of being approved for disability benefits in North Carolina?
How long does it take to receive North Carolina disability benefits after you are approved?
Disability determination services in North Carolina
Disability decisions in North Carolina
How long does it take for the disability decision in North Carolina?
How does the North Carolina Social Security disability determination process work?
Getting disability benefits in North Carolina
Getting denied for disability in North Carolina and filing appeals
What does getting disability benefits in North Carolina involve?
How to get on disability in North Carolina
NC Disability requirements and qualifications
Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in North Carolina?
What is the criteria for disability benefits in North Carolina?
What are the disability qualifications in North Carolina?
Proving the requirements for disability in North Carolina
How do you meet the Disability qualifications in North Carolina?
SSI and Social Security Disability requirements in North Carolina
How do I Know If I Qualify For Disability in North Carolina?
Winning Disability benefits in NC
How do I win disability benefits in North Carolina?
Improving your chances of getting disability in North Carolina
How to improve the chances of winning a North Carolina disability hearing
Will an attorney or representative help me win North Carolina disability benefits?
Winning disability benefits in North Carolina
Mental Disability benefits in NC
Receiving disability for a mental condition in North Carolina
How do you receive benefits for a mental disability in North Carolina?
Getting approved for mental disability benefits in North Carolina
Disability awards and award notices in North Carolina
Getting a Social Security disability award in North Carolina
The Social Security disability award notice process in North Carolina
What affects how much time it takes to get a disability award in North Carolina?
Disability representation in North Carolina
Should I get a disability representative or lawyer in North Carolina?
Who can provide disability representation in North Carolina?
Hiring a Qualified Disability Lawyer in North Carolina
How do Disability Lawyers in North Carolina get paid their fees?
Denied for disability in North Carolina, should I get an attorney or representative?
Disability attorney fees in NC - paying your lawyer or representative
How does a disability lawyer or representative get paid in North Carolina?
How much does the fee cost for a disability attorney in North Carolina?
Do you pay your disability lawyer in North Carolina or does Social Security pay the fee?
Will your North Carolina disability lawyer charge you upfront for taking your case?
Will your NC disability attorney charge you for any expenses other than the main fee?
NC disability hearings
What kind of decision will you get at a disability hearing in North Carolina?
NC disability hearing - how long for a decision?
Do you have to go to a Social Security hearing in North Carolina to get approved for disability?
The disability hearing in North Carolina- things to keep in mind
How do you prepare for a disability hearing in North Carolina?