Do I Have To Tell My Employer I Am On Social Security Disability

Jun 23, 2011 No Comments by

Do I have to tell my employer I am on Social Security disability? There is nothing in federal law that I can think of that would require one to tell an employer that one is drawing Social Security disability benefits. You may, as a practical matter, have to tell the employer when you are applying for a job, in order to explain why you have been out of work. (I can tell you as an employer that gaps in a work record raise a big red flag.)

However, if you return to work while on Social Security disability benefits, you definitely need to notify Social Security! When you notify Social Security, you should receive a written acknowledgment that you have reported the return to work. If you do not receive a written acknowledgment, you should keep contacting Social Security and demanding that written acknowledgment until it comes in.

If you do not report a return to work, or if you do not receive a written receipt of your report of return to work, you’re likely to end up with an overpayment at Social Security. There is even a chance of criminal prosecution if you fail to report a return to work.

Remember, Social Security has no problem with you returning to work after going on Social Security disability benefits. That’s perfectly legal — AS LONG AS YOU NOTIFY SOCIAL SECURITY! You only get into trouble if you don’t notify Social Security. Efforts to hide your return to work, such as using a bogus Social Security number or working under the table, are potentially criminal.

You can keep drawing full disability benefits (other than SSI) for a year after going back to work. That’s right, I said full disability benefits for a year after returning to work. That’s not a bad deal. Just make sure you tell them that you’ve returned to work. And, if it turns out that you can’t work for a full year, your benefits continue. That time working would count against you if you make another attempt to return to work. There’s even some incentives to return to work if you’re on SSI.

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About the author

Charles Hall is the lead attorney for the Charles Hall Law Firm in Raleigh, NC. He has been practicing in the Social Security Disability law field since 1979, is published, and is ready to help new clients win their benefits in North Carolina.