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  1. I work part time and am on social security disability. The State of Maine has given us extra money for working on the front lines as I am an essential worker. can I have this money during this time of the covid 19 even if it puts me over the limit of what I can earn. I work for Catholic Charites of Maine.

    • Hi Pamela, thank you for your question. Social Security has special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) to work and still receive monthly payments. These are called work incentives.

      For SSDI beneficiaries, there is a Trial Work Period (TWP) and then an Extended Period of Eligibility (EPE). The TWP allows you to test your ability to work for at least 9 months. During this period, you will receive your full disability benefit regardless of how much you earn as long as your work activity is reported and you continue to have a disabling impairment. In 2020, any month in which earnings exceed $910 is considered a month of the 9-month trial work period.

      Once you’ve completed your TWP, you get a 36-month safety net called the EPE. During the EPE, you get benefits for all months your earnings or work activities are below the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level as long as you continue to have a disabling impairment. Social Security will suspend cash benefits for months earnings are over SGA and start benefits again if earnings fall below the SGA level. In 2020, you are earning SGA if your earnings, after any allowable deductions, are more than $1,260 in a month.

      Check out Social Security’s Red Book for descriptions of the many work incentives.

  2. i am a US Citizen living in Australia. I receive my monthly SSA retirement benefits ( am 86 years old ) via direct deposit to my Australian bank. As of 28/05/2020 have yet to receive my EIP. I have been trying to contact SSA viaa email without success. Please , can you help me? thank you, John De La Cruz ssn XXXXXXXXX email johncruz@optusnet.com.au Thank you, John De La Cruz

    • Hi David, thanks for using our blog. To request a replacement SSA-1099 for 2018, you may:
      •Call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) or
      •Contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

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