Off The Record – Workers’ Comp – How Does Workers’ Comp Benefits Affect Social Security Benefits?
Hi. This is Aimee Berlin. I’m one of the partners at Turley Redmond Rosasco. And I’ve spoken before about various topics for you all and something that has always come up, and it’s just come up again this morning, it comes up all the time, is how will workers’ compensation benefits affect my Social Security benefits and vice versa. And there’s a number of different aspects to this topic. And there’s a number of different scenarios that pop up, of course, but just some basics I wanna tell you about, some basic bullet points are you’re entitled to collect both workers’ compensation and Social Security disability. All right? Because people always say, oh, well, can I get both benefits? Yes, you can.
Sometimes there is what’s called an offset. In layman’s terms that means that the benefits can affect each other, okay? So, depending on what you’re getting in workers’ compensation benefits and what you’re getting in Social Security, we review your salary, your salary history, actually, and what you’re getting from each benefit to make sure that they’re running concurrently, but you’re not receiving what you shouldn’t. Because sometimes with workers’ compensation, if you’re receiving a certain amount, it can affect what you receive in Social Security and vice versa. The reason this is important is because you don’t wanna be underpaid, but you also don’t wanna be overpaid for your benefits. Because many times what happens is people are collecting workers’ comp benefits and they don’t report that to Social Security. Whatever the benefit is and whether there’s also a decrease or an increase. And sometimes what happens is an underpayment can be generated, but sometimes an overpayment can be generated with Social Security.
So, my advice to people is always, whatever you’re receiving in workers’ compensation, it has to be reported to Social Security. It’s very easy to do that. You call the Social Security Administration and you report your weekly benefit rate. We can also provide you with documents that show what your weekly rate is to submit and to make sure you’re receiving the correct amount. Whether or not you have an offset, how they affect each other, that’s something that we can calculate for you. So, I always tell people, we sit down, we look at the numbers, we’ll calculate it, and we’ll let you know. There are variables, but the main thing is something that becomes alarming to people sometimes is their benefits with workers’ compensation aren’t reported, and they do generate an overpayment. And then Social Security says, hey, you know what, we overpaid you and you owe us that money back. And you do.
You know, people say, oh, well, you know, they should have known, or it wasn’t my fault. It doesn’t matter it’s still, you know, you’re entitled to receive a certain amount, and if there is an overpayment, you have to pay it back. Usually, they’re good, they work out payment plans unless you wanted to pay it back all at once. And if there’s an underpayment too, same scenario, you know, we wanna let them know so they can increase your benefits accordingly. Okay? And this comes up whether you’re receiving a weekly workers’ compensation benefit or whether you receive a lump sum payment from a settlement. Especially when we do like a full settlement of your workers’ compensation case that has to be reported to Social Security. So, just keep these things in mind and don’t hesitate or be afraid to ask us how they affect each other, because they can, and they do. And there are certain implications, and we wanna make sure that you’re getting the correct amount of benefits from each administration.