The Social Security Administration (SSA) reports that, as of May 2022, it was paying disability benefits to more than 70,000 Americans. Only a small portion of those recipients are receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, while the majority are those under the age of 65 receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits or those aged 65 and older who may be disabled and receiving Social Security benefits. When you are receiving either SSDI or SSI benefits and suddenly you stop receiving the payments you are expecting, you are likely wondering what could have happened. Depending upon your specific circumstances, there are different reasons that the SSA may have stopped paying your benefits to you. Consider some of the following issues that could have arisen, and then seek help with your case.
Multiple Ways to Lose SSDI Benefit Eligibility
Anyone who has been receiving SSDI benefits and is no longer receiving them should know that there are multiple ways in which you can lose SSDI benefit eligibility.
One of the most common reasons that a person will lose SSDI benefits is that they returned to work in some capacity and, in so doing, suggested to the SSA that they were able to engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA). When you are receiving SSDI benefits, you are permitted to engage in some forms of work and can earn a little bit of money. However, in most cases, you cannot earn more than $1,350 in a month, or else you will be considered to be engaging in SGA. If you think you may be able to return to work more fully but want to find out before losing your SSDI benefits, you should find out about the “trial work period” that the SSA allows for SSDI recipients.
Another common scenario is that individuals who reach the age of retirement will stop receiving SSDI benefits. This is true even if you remain disabled because your SSDI benefits will convert to regular Social Security benefits after retirement.
Less commonly, SSDI recipients lose their benefits because they are convicted of a felony, are incarcerated, or are institutionalized. Moreover, if you were receiving benefits based on a former spouse’s work record or a parent’s work record, getting married or earning too much income could have resulted in your loss of eligibility.
SSI Loss of Eligibility is Usually Based on Your Income and Resources
Most SSI recipients who stop receiving payments have become ineligible due to an increase in their income or resources. Since SSI is for disabled people with limited resources, a rise in resources through marriage or an inheritance could end SSI eligibility.
Error Could Have Been Made
Finally, in some circumstances, the SSA could have simply made a mistake, or an error could have occurred in the benefit payment system. If you do not believe there is a reason that could have resulted in your losing benefits, you should get in touch with the Social Security Administration as soon as possible to correct a possible error.
If you need help having your Social Security benefits reinstated, or if you have questions about your general eligibility for disability benefits through the SSA, you should seek advice from a lawyer who has experience handling disability benefits cases.