Can a work injury turn into a Social Security Disability claim?

Most workplace injuries that happen in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are relatively minor. If necessary, the victim might file a workers’ compensation claim, miss work for a while, then come back when they have recovered.

Then there are the devastating work-related injuries that cause long-term disabilities. They may happen in a single, major accident or build up after years of performing repetitive, physically demanding tasks. Either way, your disability greatly affects your life and makes continuing to work impossible. You and your doctor expect your condition to remain about the same for years, possibly the rest of your life. This scenario sounds more like you could claim Social Security Disability benefits as well as workers’ comp.

In fact, you can qualify for SSD while also receiving workers’ compensation. But you should know how this will affect the amount of benefits you will get. Basically, the more workers’ comp you receive, the less SSD you can expect to get for the same disabling injury or illness.

The law caps your disability benefits

Here’s how it works: the SSA adds your monthly SSD payment to your workers’ comp and any other public disability payment you are receiving. The sum cannot exceed 80 percent of your average current monthly earnings. If it does, SSA deducts the excess from your payments. Thus, if you are close to the 80 percent cutoff already with the benefits you are currently receiving, you might want to consider whether it will be worth the time and effort to pursue SSD benefits.

However, many people would certainly benefit from getting both workers’ comp and SSD benefits to help pay their bills. If you qualify for both, getting the maximum benefits to which you are entitled can improve your family’s life.

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