Social Security and Workers Comp- Can I Collect Both???

Date: September 11, 2014
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Question: I was injured at work and I am receiving workers compensation benefits. Since I cannot work as a result of the work injury, I have also applied for Social Security Disability benefits. If I am found “disabled” by Social Security, can I collect both workers comp and Social Security at the same time?

Answer: Yes. You may be able to collect both Social Security Disability (SSDIB) benefits and workers compensation benefits at the same time. However, there are some limitations. Under the Social Security rules, a person can only collect workers compensation (WC) benefits and Social Security Disability (SSDIB) benefits up to a maximum amount of 80% of what they were earning when they were last able to work. Let’s use Jack as an example. Jack was earning $30,000.00 a year when he was injured. That breaks down to $2,500.00 per month. 80% of that is $2,000.00  per month. So the $2,000.00 figure represents the maximum amount of benefits (SSDIB and workers comp) that Jack can collect per month. For purposes of his workers comp claim, Jack had a pre injury average weekly wage of $576.93. This translates to a weekly workers comp benefit rate of $384.62 per week. So the amount of workers compensation benefits that Jack collects per month totals $1,669.25 ($384.62/week multiplied by 4.34 weeks per month= $1,669.25). As Jack’s total monthly benefit amount (SSDIB and WC) is capped at $2,000.00 per month, the maximum amount of SSDIB benefits payable to Jack would be $330.75.

If you’ve suffered a work injury and have questions about your claim, contact me at tcummings@dlplaw.com or call (570) 347-1011 for a free consultation.

Tom Cummings
Thomas P. Cummings has been a Partner with Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP since 1996 and has been with the firm since 1991. He focuses his practice on workers’ compensation, Social Security Disability and personal injury cases.