Working in California puts you at risk for a work-related injury in many job sectors. However, if you are already receiving Social Security Disability benefits for something else, you may be hesitant about applying for workers’ compensation. There are a few ways workers’ compensation benefits can affect your SSD compensation.
The Social Security Administration handles the approval and payments for Social Security Disability. Insurance companies and employers including state and federal agencies may pay your workers’ compensation benefits depending on your job. The administration takes the amount you receive from workers’ compensation and adds that to the expected income from SSD income. The total of these payments cannot “exceed 80 percent of your average current earnings before you became disabled.”
Essentially, if you received the full 80% from SSD prior to the injury, your workers’ comp benefits would decrease your SSD payments. However, the total amount of both would remain the same. In essence, your income remains stable. For those who choose to accept a lump sum workers’ compensation payment, the payment can affect your SSD income as well.
If the workers’ compensation benefits stop, you can request an SSD income adjustment. The same holds true for other disability benefits you may currently receive from other sources. If you are unsure what number the administration uses to calculate your average current earnings, be sure to contact the SSA regarding their calculations.
There are other income sources that do not affect SSD income such as VA benefits. This information is intended only to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.