Does A Workers’ Compensation Claim Affect Social Security Disability Benefits?
There is occasionally some confusion between workers’ compensation benefits and Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. Some might think they are the same thing because the terms are often used very closely with each other for injuries, but they are not. For help understanding these benefits and eligibility, turn to Meshbesher Law Firm.
Understanding Benefit Types
Workers’ compensation provides compensation to workers that suffered an injury during the scope of their job. On the other hand, SSD benefits are federal funds that will cover you if you are left partially or totally disabled and unable to work to your previous ability.
Often, if your injury is work-related and temporary, workers’ compensation will be enough to cover your injuries. However, if your injury is not temporary and will leave you disabled for the rest of your life, unable to live up to your previous earning potential, then SSD benefits will be able to cover your lost wages. Workers’ compensation can also cover permanent disability, but only if the injury occurred at work.
Can You Collect Both Benefits At The Same Time?
The short answer is yes, but only under the right situations. Often you can collect disability benefits from the state level to cover expenses while waiting for a workers’ compensation claim to be settled. But the state will expect you to repay the benefit amount once you get your workers’ compensation settlement. This can be a disadvantage if you get a bad settlement and your state benefits were actually higher than your workers’ compensation benefits. If you are collecting SSD benefits from a federal level, you will not need to repay benefits.
You can only collect federal benefits if:
- You are permanently disabled
- Your disability will last for more than a year
- You have a terminal illness
- You paid the necessary funds for coverage into the SSD system
If you meet the requirements, you can collect federal disability benefits as well as receive a workers’ compensation settlement at the same time.
It is important to keep in mind that if you are collecting state benefits or workers’ compensation, the federal government may reduce the amount of SSD benefits. State benefits will likely get terminated to give way to federal ones. But because workers’ compensation is company-tied, you will still get that if your injury was work-related. Note, you will not receive a lower amount of workers’ compensation if you are receiving SSD benefits as well.
Need More Information?
When it comes to navigating benefits on a workers’ compensation, at the state or federal level, the whole thing is going to be one gigantic headache. The process is difficult to handle, especially if you are still dealing with the aftermath of your injury.