Social Security Disability Benefits in Pennsylvania - Step One of the Analysis
Potter County, Mckean County, Tioga County, Cameron County, PA
So you have applied for social security benefits in Pennsylvania and they want information on your employment and earnings. Why do they want to know what you are making? The answer is that if you are working and earn too much then you may not qualify for benefits.
The first step of the social security analysis is whether you are engaged in substantial gainful activity (SGA). If you earn over a certain dollar amount then you are presumed to be capable of SGA. This amount changes over time. In 2008 it was $940.00 per month. In 2009 it was $980 per month. In 2010-2011 it is $1,000.00 per month.
What happens if you earn more than that per month? We faced that very question in a tough case recently. Our client had a make work job at McDonalds. He had physical and mental limitations and was legitimately not able to work but because of the charity he was receiving from his employer, he was not eligible for benefits. In that case, we were able to convince the hearing examiner that there were unusual circumstances and that if he looked at the income as a whole, even though some months he went over the threshold, as a whole the claimant earned less than the presumptive amount.
Now you know about SGA. If you have a claim for social security benefits, contact an attorney. This is a complicated area of the law that requires specialized knowledge.
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From offices in Coudersport, Potter County, Pennsylvania, the attorneys at Ross and Ross, LLC serve the personal injury, bankruptcy, social security disability, divorce and family law needs of Western, Northwestern, Central and North Central Pennsylvania including the communities of Coudersport, Galeton, Shinglehouse, West Branch, Smethport, Port Allegany, Bradford, Roulette, and Wellsboro, as well as Potter County, McKean County, Tioga County, Cameron County, Bradford County and other areas of Western PA and Central PA.
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