If I Move to a Different State Will I Lose My Disability Benefits?

If I Move to a Different State Will I Lose My Disability Benefits?

Sometimes an individual receiving disability benefits needs or wants to move out of state for one reason or another. However, the concern arises….”will they lose their benefits?” The answer to this question depends on if they’re receiving SSDI or SSI payments.

SSDIIf I Move to a Different State Will I Lose My Disability Benefits?

If you’re a disability recipients who receives Social Security Disability Insurance payments, then moving to a new state will not affect you at all. All you need to do is call your local Security office to give them your new address so that you won’t miss any important correspondence from Social Security, let alone your checks! If you have direct deposit, you still need to give them your address for the correspondence. You can also change your address online at www.socialsecurity.gov/changeofaddress.


If you’re receiving Supplemental Security Insurance, moving to a new state could not only change the amount of your monthly benefit check but it could affect your financial eligibility for benefits all together.

Why you ask? The reason is that while SSI is indeed a federal benefit, many states add on a small amount of money otherwise known as a state supplementary payment, to your SSI payment every month. If your old state paid more of this supplement than your new state, or if your new state doesn’t pay it at all, your benefits could be for less than you’re used to.

Additionally, each state has a different SSI income limit which is also affected by the presence or non presence of each state’s state supplementary payment. It can be quite complicated so, for more information, contact your Social Security office.

Contact Your Social Security Office

If you have any questions or concerns about your eligibility for benefits or the amount you’ll be receiving if and when you move, call your local office. There, a claims representative can help you calculate any changes.


Local Disability Attorneys Versus National Ones

ABLE Act of 2014

The Appealing Process of Disability

Local Disability Attorneys Versus National Ones

Local Disability Attorneys Versus National Ones

When searching for representation for your disability claim, you find yourself faced with many tempting commercial ads for national firms and it’s these firms that also always pop up first on an internet search. Therefore, they must be the way to go right? Maybe. However, maybe not. It’s almost always a better idea to hire locally.

3 Reasons Hiring Local is the Way to Go

It’s true; Social Security claims can be taken care of from any location, but there are real benefits to having a local lawyer represent you:3 Reasons Hiring Local is the Way to Go

1) In person meetings. Working with a local firm, lets you meet face to face with those handling your case early on in the process. This way you can discuss your case in depth before the hearing, which is a huge advantage. When working with a national firm, you often get passed off to the Junior Attorneys or Paralegals and never meet the actual attorney who is handling your case until the day of the hearing. If that happens, you are a mere case number to the attorney, rather than an actual client they have a relationship with and are invested in.

2) Familiarity with local Judges. It can help your case immensely to have a lawyer who knows the area’s judges and their peculiarities. All Social Security cases are first heard by administrative law judges, and they’re all different in how they like to handle cases. When your attorney knows the judge, they’re able to present your case in the way the judge tends to prefer.

3) Familiarity with local SSA staff and doctors. Local attorneys have contacts at the local Social Security offices and with local physicians and specialists. Relationships that your lawyer has established with these people can be very beneficial to your case.


The Appealing Process of Disability

Five Things Social Security Won’t Tell You

How Many Work Credits Do I Need for SSDI Eligibility?

ABLE Act of 2014

ABLE Act of 2014

The ABLE Act (The Achieving a Better Life Experience) Act was introduced in the 113th Congress by a bi-partisan, bicameral set of Congressional Champions. These champions include Senators, Robert Casey Jr. and Richard Burr and Representatives Ander Crenshaw, Chris Van Hollen, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Pete Sessions. Support has been growing for this Act, which may become law this year.ABLE Act of 2014

Under ABLE, individuals receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid could establish tax favored accounts to cover qualified expenses for medical care, housing, schooling and transportation. This would be done by amending Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986 to create these accounts for individuals with disabilities. This bill would supplement but not supplant, benefits provided through private insurances , the Medicaid program, the SSI program, the beneficiary’s employment and other sources.

The ABLE Act provides individuals with disabilities the same types of flexible savings tools that all other Americans have access to through college savings accounts, individual retirement accounts and the like. This is overall , a good thing.

There is controversy, however, because as it stands, ABLE is really a bill to help the disabled family members/children of middle class and wealthy individuals. These individuals can use ABLE accounts to transfer funds to their disabled family members. Most people on SSI and Medicaid rarely have the ability to accumulate assets on their own in an ABLE account. ABLE could help middle class and wealthy families at the expense of people who apply for SSI in general due to its proposed “pay-fors” that would:

  • -Eliminate the percentage and dollar cap on the user fee that those representing Social Security claimants pay for processing direct payment of fees for representing Social Security claimants.
  • -End the Single Decisionmaker pilot currently used in twenty states.
  • -End the Reconsideration elimination pilot currently used in ten states.

Ending the single decisionmakeer and reconsideration elimination pilots, would make it more difficult to be approved for disability benefits in states affected by ABLE. Some suggest that the pilots be extended to all states and ABLE be part of a comprehensive effort to update the income and resource provisions of SSI and Medicaid. SSI’s provisions have not been updated since SSI came into existence about 40 years ago.

Additionally, eliminating the percentage and dollar caps on the user fee would reduce the net income of those who represent Social Security Claimants which is already a high overhead, low profit margin business. Social Security Representation could become a thing of the past.

Want to learn more about SSI? Check out:

The Appealing Process of Disability

Five Things Social Security Won’t Tell You

WA Vets Will Clinic

WA Vets Will Clinic

Saturday, October 18th from 9am to 5pm South Sound Clinic at Rally Point 6 in Lakewood, Washington will hold a clinic providing free estate planning documents to veterans of the U.S. armed forces. It's all about serving those who served. Everyone who takes part in this event will receive wills, power of attorney documents, health care directives, and health care power of attorney documents all free of charge. Please note that space to these clinics is limited and applicants are not guaranteed service.WA Vets Will Clinic

To sign up, you must apply using the WA Vets Will Clinic online intake form so that you can be considered for free estate plan documents. All clinics like this one are by appointment only. No one will be able to "walk up". If you're a veteran and you and your spouse would both like to request a WA Vets Will Clinic appointment, you must both fill out the intake questionnaires.               

To qualify for a WA Vets Will Clinic event, an applicant must:

Be a Washington State resident; and

Be a Veteran of a branch of the United States Armed Forces (or a spouse of a living Veteran); and

Have a DD214 (Report of Separation or some other official document evidencing military service); and

Have a net worth of less than $500,000.00 ($1,000,000.00 if married); and

Agree to the terms and conditions available on this website, those in the online enrollment application, and any other conditions in place for individual Clinic events.

Specifics on registration and/or clinic offerings is as follows:


 Next Clinic: Saturday, October 4, 2014, at Gonzaga University School of Law.

                            Clinic Time: 9am – 5pm


Next Clinic: Saturday, October 18, 2014, at the University of Washington School of Law.


Next Clinic: Saturday, October 18, 2014, at Rally Point 6.


 Next Clinic: Saturday, October 25, 2014, at Wenatchee Valley Community College.

                            Clinic time: TBD


Next Clinic: October 2014 – Columbia Basin College.

                            Clinic time: TBD

For more information on signing up or how you can volunteer at one of these events, please go here.




Five Things Social Security Won’t Tell You

Five Things Social Security Won't Tell You

POTENTIAL BENEFIT CUT: In recent years, the number of people collecting disability benefits has really spiked. Some of the change can be attributed to more women entering the workforce over the past several decades, and as baby boomers age, more of them are qualifying for and collecting disability, as well psychiatric disorders increasing over recent years. Additionally, the slow economy caused some workers to lose their jobs or find that there were fewer they qualified for due to their disability so they applied for disability benefits.Five Things Social Security Won't Tell You

All of these factors are draining the Social Security Trust Fund faster than expected and it could be depleted by 2016. If this happens and congress doesn't act, those receiving benefits could be facing a 20% cut.

SOCIAL SECURITY USED TO BE A BETTER DEAL: Employees today pay more in Social Security taxes than previous generations did. Additionally, when it's their turn to retire, they're also more likely to receive smaller benefits relative to the taxes they paid in. As the number of eligible beneficiaries grows and the funds deplete, taxes are raised and will probably continue to be raised.

In 1965, workers paid 3.6%. They now pay 6.2%. For example: an individual who retired at the age of 65 in 1980 and made $44,600 would have paid $98,000 in Social Security taxes and received $207,000 in benefits. Now, an individual retiring in 2030 making about the same money will pay $404,000 in Social Security taxes and only receive $339,000 in benefits.

IF YOU WANT MORE BENEFITS, KEEP WORKING: Those approaching retirement age have been doing the math. How much do they get if they wait to take payments? To get the biggest bump in benefits, you have to wait beyond full retirement age. For every additional year you wait, you get an increase in benefits of up to 8% until age 70. You can visit the Social Security Website to calculate your date and yearly rate of increase.

IT'S POSSIBLE TO COLLECT UNEMPLOYEMENT AND SOCIAL SECURITY: According to the National Employment Law Project who advocates for seniors to collect both, a growing number of seniors are doing so and it's perfectly legal as long as you report it to both parties.

IF YOU MAKE TOO MUCH, YOUR BENEFITS WILL BE TAXED: Many Americans think they can't be taxed on their Social Security Benefits since they come from taxes, but they'd be wrong. If you receive substantial taxable income from other sources such as dividends, self employment, investment interest and pensions, or IRA or 401k distributions, your Social Security benefits could be taxed.  The rule is if your combined income (other sources plus half of your Social Security benefits) exceeds $25,000 for an individual and $32,000 for a married couple then, you may be taxed on up to 85% of your benefits.

See also:

Social Security, Disability and Brain Injuries

How Many Work Credits Do I Need for SSDI Eligibility?