Disability Benefits Counseling

VR Benefits Specialist is a certified professional that has extensive training on how employment may affect your Social Security benefits. You may request that benefit planning be included in your vocational plan. Work incentives help individuals who work and receive benefits. Your benefits specialist can help you understand which incentives can be most advantageous for you. 

What Is Supplemental Security Income (SSI)? 

SSI is a monthly Social Security disability benefit program that is strictly need-based, according to income and assets, and is funded by public taxes. SSI is a means-tested program; it has nothing to do with work history, but strictly with financial need. To meet SSI income requirements, you must have less than $2,000 in assets (or $3,000 for a couple) and a very limited income. People with disabilities who are eligible under the income requirements for SSI are also able to receive Medicaid in South Carolina. SSI benefits are received on the first of the month. 

SSI Work Incentives Include:

  • Student Earned Income Exclusion
  • Earned Income Exclusion
  • Impairment Related Work Expenses
  • If not eligible for your cash benefit due to work, you may be able to continue to receive Medicaid
  • Section 301 benefits may provide for continuation of SSI and/or SSDI payments after your impairment ceases to be disabling if you are participating in a state vocational rehabilitation program
  • Expedited Reinstatement
  • PASS (Plan to Achieve Self-Support), which helps individuals with disabilities return to work

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

SSDI is a monthly disability benefit funded through payroll taxes. Recipients are considered insured because they have worked for a certain number of years and have made contributions to the Social Security trust fund in the form of FICA taxes. SSDI candidates must be younger than 66 and have earned enough work credits. After receiving SSDI for two years, a person with a disability will become eligible for Medicare. The spouse and dependents of a person with a disability may be eligible to receive partial dependent benefits, called auxiliary benefits. However, only adults over the age of 18 can receive the SSDI disability benefit.

SSDI Work Incentives

  • 9 Trial Work Period Months
  • Extended Period of Eligibility
  • Expedited Period of Reinstatement
  • Impairment Related Work Expenses
  • Extended Period of Medicare Coverage
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