Retired man in his wheelchair

By Marie Lowery

Some individuals who are eligible for workers compensation benefits may also be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. However, workers are not able to receive the full amount of Social Security benefits and workers’ compensation benefits at the same time.

If you have received a workers’ compensation settlement or other public disability benefit, it is important to seek the advice of an attorney as these benefits may reduce your Social Security benefits.

Your monthly Social Security disability benefits, including benefits payable to your family members, are added together with your workers’ compensation or other public disability payment. If the total amount of these benefits exceeds 80 percent of your average current earnings, the excess amount is deducted from your Social Security benefit. The process of Social Security reducing disability benefits to account for worker’s compensation is called a worker’s compensation “offset.”

The rules about how Social Security calculates worker’s compensation offsets are complicated therefore it is important to have an attorney work on your case. Especially when an individual receives a lump sum workers’ compensation settlement it is important that the settlement agreement is drafted properly to minimize any offset of Social Security disability insurance benefits.

If you are concerned about Social Security reducing your Social Security Disability Insurance benefits because of a workers’ compensation award, please call our office to help you resolve your case in a way that leaves you with the most money possible each month or use our online contact form.

About the Author

Ken Harrell joined Joye Law Firm in 1994, and has been the managing partner since 2006. With 30 years of experience, he protects the rights of injured South Carolinians, including cases involving workers’ compensation, car accidents, and defective products. Ken also leads the firm’s referral practice, helping to ensure that our clients receive the best possible representation. He is a past president of South Carolina Injured Workers’ Advocates, and has served as the co-chairman of this organization’s legislative affairs committee for 12 years.

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