Returning to work after leaving because of a disability can be a daunting prospect. Facing new challenges can be difficult, and you might not know if you’re ready. Fortunately, there are allowances in place so you may not be putting your benefits in danger for trying.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) puts a cap on how much you earn each month before your Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits are in danger. Your monthly income can’t head above monthly amounts of $1,260, or $2,110 if you’re blind. Anything over that and your payments could be in trouble unless you qualify for certain allowances.

Trial work period

A trial work period can let you test the waters before going back to work full-time. You might still get your full disability payments even as you ease back into the workforce. As long as your impairment is still evident, and you report how much work you perform, there might not be any restrictions on how much you can earn. This period can last for nine non-consecutive months within a 60-month window before the SSA will take another look at your status.

Extended period of eligibility

If you successfully complete your trial work period and return to work, your benefits may not be done for good. You could have your payments start up again when your income dips back below acceptable levels and you still have your disability. The assistance will likely cease if you’re back above the limit in the next month. This timeline for reapplying benefits lasts for 36 months after the end of your trial.

Getting back into the workforce can be a huge change and one that you shouldn’t take lightly. Your SSDI payments may not be yours forever once you’re earning again, but there may be a safety net to catch you if you can’t make the comeback right away.