Natalia Jofre: Hello, and welcome to Hill and Ponton Social Security Disability Blog. I am the Social Security Section Director here, Natalia Jofre.
Shelly Mark: And, I am Shelly Mark. I’m the Senior Social Security Attorney.
Natalia Jofre: So, we’ve been talking about Workers Compensation in conjunction with Social Security Disability benefits and how they work together. One of the things we wanna tell you is that you cannot receive more than 80% of your prior earning of your monthly benefit can’t be more than 80% of what your wages used to be from Social Security and Workers Comp combined.
Shelly Mark: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Natalia Jofre: Okay. So, you can’t get a full Workers Comp benefit in addition to your full Social Security Disability benefit. So, clients always ask us, why? Why? You know, and we were just talking about this earlier.
Shelly Mark: Right. Yeah, what’s the reasoning there?
Natalia Jofre: And, clients will tell us, but ones from the state. One’s from the federal government.
Shelly Mark: Right. So, your Workers Compensation Benefits come from the state, and then obviously, Social Security Disability is a federal program. I think the rationale or reasoning for it is to really give people more incentive to go back into employment or to stay employed if at all possible. Because as we know, Natalia, Social Security benefits, you were gonna earn more if you’re able to work.
Natalia Jofre: Yeah. A lot more.
Shelly Mark: Because your Social Security Disability amount is a product of your earnings and your taxes, but it is a lower amount than what you would earn if you could work at some substantial level.
Natalia Jofre: Right. And, with Workers Comp, it’s a little bit more favorable to the claimant and to the injured worker, because it is a direct percentage of what you were making before your injury occurred. But, so what they’re gonna do is they’re gonna do is they’re gonna look at your prior earnings. And, they’re either gonna take the highest year of earnings in one of the five years that you last worked or a combination of the five years. So, we’ll get more into that at some other time, because it does get pretty complicated.
Natalia Jofre: But, for now, what you really need to know is that it’s never going to be more than 80% of your combined … Your benefit can’t be more than 80% of what your wages used to be when you were actually working. Okay. And, Social Security basically wants to incentivize you in going back to work.
Shelly Mark: Right. Yeah.
Natalia Jofre: Okay. If you have any other questions or concerns about this, feel free to call us or visit our website. Otherwise, we’ll see you next time.
Shelly Mark: Thank you.