Our clients often wonder if they will be required to choose between receiving Social Security Disability and Workers’ Compensation. The simple answer to this question is that no, receiving one of these benefits does not prevent you from receiving the other. They are entirely separate programs. However, it can be more complicated.
Continue reading to learn the facts about receiving SSDI and Workers’ Compensation benefits at the same time and then contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 562-222-0146 for a free legal consultation.
Receiving Both Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability at the Same Time
If you qualify for both disability benefits and workers’ compensation benefits, then you can receive both. Note that SSDI is a federal program run by the Social Security Administration (SSA). Workers’ Compensation programs vary by state.
Qualifying for SSDI
There are some big differences between Workers’ Compensation, which we will cover later, but the first thing to know is that qualifying for SSDI is much different. If you cannot work due to an occupational illness and/or workplace injury, then you could qualify for SSA benefits, but only if you are entirely unable to work for at least 12 months or you have a condition that is likely to result in death. SSA does not award partial disability, and your claim will be denied if you can still work.
When determining if you qualify, the SSA will use a Blue Book, which is a medical guide. It lists conditions and medical criteria that must be met for the person to be considered permanently disabled.
For example, if you have been diagnosed with cancer that was caused by toxic chemicals at your work, the Blue Book lists specific types of cancer, and you must meet certain medical criteria for the type of cancer you are facing. You must also be able to provide a variety of documentation, including the origin of the cancer, post-therapeutic residuals, the extent of the spreading of the cancer, and the duration, frequency, and response to all anti-cancer therapy you have received.
The Main Differences Between SSDI and Workers’ Compensation
The qualifications for both are quite different, which means that you might qualify for one and not the other. For example, Workers’ Compensation is generally designed to be temporary and to allow employees income while they heal and work to get back to work. On the other hand, SSDI is only issued for permanent disabilities.
Just because you qualify for one of these programs does not mean you will qualify for both, but it is important to ensure that you are looking forward to your future options. If you have questions or need legal assistance, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 562-222-0146 for a free legal consultation.