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Can your Impairment-Related Work Expenses Affect SSDI Eligibility?

Impairment-related work expenses are also known as IRWEs and are costs that are associated with assistive living or assistive living services. Most of the time, IRWEs are for individuals with disabilities that need mechanical or personal assistance in order to perform their job. The SSA allows eligible applicants who are able to perform minimal work to be approved for eligibility if they are able to meet income requirement guidelines. Some disabled individuals are worried that they may not qualify for eligibility because of their income, but then they have to spend a significant chunk of that money on IRWEs.

The SSA understands this dilemma, so they have created guidelines that will help to determine if a person is still eligible for SSDI despite being able to work. All IRWEs can be excluded from an individual's earnings if the item or service is required for work, or if the item or service has a reasonable cost. Also, if the item or service is needed to accommodate a mental or physical impairment, or is not covered by reimbursement from other sources like Medicaid or insurance, then it can be excluded from an individual's earnings.

The items that may be deemed eligible IRWEs for income exclusion are normally related to assisted living services, medical devices, adaptive home renovations, or the costs of assisted transportation. Once again, these costs must be directly related to work, and not just to the person's lifestyle. For example, if an individual has to pay for assisted transportation to get to and from work, this would be an IRWE that may be excluded. In every IRWE category there are some items that are deductible and some that are not, so you will want to talk to an SSDI attorney to learn more. The attorneys at the Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC are willing to assist you in your case so talk to them today!