Can I Receive Social Security Disability & Unemployment Benefits at The Same Time? A Disability Lawyer Answers
Since 1998, Merryl Jones – the Second Chance Lawyer – has been dedicated to helping Texans receive the Social Security Disability benefits they deserve. With a 98% success rate, Merryl Jones is the disability lawyer who knows how to help you receive your disability benefits and move forward with your life!
One question we often get is “Can I receive Social Security Disability and unemployment at the same time?” This is actually a somewhat complicated question, and you might be surprised to learn that the answer is ‘Maybe!’ While it seems like the two forms of benefits would be mutually exclusive, there are occasional situations where the two can be received at the same time.
This is a complicated matter, and if it concerns you, the best thing to do is to contact a Texas disability lawyer for a consultation. However, let’s dig into the question and provide an overview of the situation.
When Could Someone Possibly Receive Disability and Unemployment at The Same Time?
For someone to receive disability, they are claiming that they are unable to do any of their past jobs. However, to receive unemployment, a person must affirm that they are able to be employed. Logically, these two claims would cancel each other out – but not necessarily.
So, let’s dig a little deeper…
There are two basic qualifications to receive unemployment benefits. One is that you lost your job through no fault of your own. There are many situations where this can be true while also leading to you being disabled. Second, you must still be able to claim that you are “ready, willing, and able” to find new work.
On the other hand, the key element of Social Security Disability claims is that you are unable to work. However, there’s a catch here. In some cases, when applying for Social Security Disability, you must only affirm that you are unable to perform any past work that you have done in the last 15 years. So, for example, a construction worker who has become unable to do manual labor could still honestly apply for his unemployment benefits affirming that he is able and willing to work at a sit-down job, while still potentially qualifying as “disabled.”
Again, these are merely hypothetical scenarios. Every person’s situation is different, and only a trained Texas disability lawyer can fully advise you on your situation.
Another potential wrinkle is that the number of hours you can work or the amount of money you can potentially make could also influence the decision. Someone who is only capable of working a few hours a week or makes far below a living wage could potentially still qualify as being both “disabled” and “unemployed.”
Finally, age is another factor. For people over 50, demonstrating disability becomes much easier, as there are numerous reasons an older person could become unable to work full-time in their preferred job. It becomes easier for a disability lawyer to explain why someone over 50 could be both disabled and unemployed at once.
However, none of these outcomes are guaranteed. These sorts of cases are handled purely on a case-by-case basis. The better your disability lawyer means the better your chances will be!
Can You Receive Disability and Unemployment Consecutively?
Another potential scenario is you might be able to claim both disability and unemployment benefits back-to-back, one after the other rather than receiving both at once. This is actually more common, and easier for a disability lawyer to argue in court.
For example, there are two types of disability benefits: closed period of disability and an open ended period of disability. A closed period of disability covers situations where an accident or injury leaves you unable to work for 12 months or longer, but the injury will eventually heal, and you’ll be able to resume normal work once that happens. In such a case, a person could potentially get a closed period of disability benefits, then switch over to unemployment after they’ve healed up and begun searching for a new job.
Less commonly, a person might be receiving unemployment and then become disabled. Whether or not the disability is related to the loss of their previous job, in this case, they would possibly be able to collect unemployment, then disability benefits.
A good Texas disability lawyer will know how to make the most of your opportunities!
In Summary: Receiving Both Disability and Unemployment at Once Is Rare, But Possible
At the office of Merryl Jones, we want to give you every possible opportunity to receive the benefits you deserve. If that includes both disability and unemployment, we will help you look into the matter. Don’t assume that you cannot qualify without first seeking legal advice. You might be surprised!
If you’ve recently been injured and have lost your job, or are in danger of doing so, contact Merryl Jones, The Second Chance Lawyer, for help!