Lawyers, Answer Questions  & Get Points Log In
Questions Answered by Susan Michele Schaefer
2 Answers | Asked in Tax Law and Social Security for Pennsylvania on
Q: Unrecorded income

Hello,

Income I made from 1992 to 1994 was not recorded even if I filed my taxes for those years. I contacted my ex-employer and they gave me a confirm letter with my salaries for the years I worked, but the letter is not considered as proof by the social security office. I just dont know... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Nov 14, 2020

Usually, the IRS reports wages to Social Security, but sometimes there are discrepancies. You definitely should correct your earnings record with Social Security. If all of your earnings are not shown on your earnings record, this could mean lower Social Security benefits for you or your family.... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for New York on
Q: Hi yes I have a couple questions I will be 65 in a couple months Every time I call Social Security to see how much money

I will make it’s always the different amount I asked him what was the formula they use and they said 35 years of your year work and divide by 12 that would give me my monthly benefits well it’s not the same as theirs

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Nov 14, 2020

Try calculating your Social Security retirement this way:

Step 1: Use your earnings history to calculate your Average Indexed Monthly Earnings (AIME). Use your earnings statement that Social Security has - you can find your record on your My Social Security account. The AIME calculation...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Georgia on
Q: Does the 650 rent I pay get deducted from the income I make at Publix that I report to SSI. I don't understand

My daughter is going to live on her own and works at Publix. She receives SSI. Her income affects her benefit. Her rent will be 675 a month. Will that be deducted from her income she makes?

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Nov 13, 2020

No, your daughter's rent is not deducted from the income she makes for SSI purposes.

Since she is living on her own and paying her own rent, Social Security will not reduce her SSI payments for that reason. The rule is that a person's SSI payment is reduced by one-third if the...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Florida on
Q: I downloaded ssa form 795 (at the suggestion of the SSA cust Serv rep) to request all the backpay from ssi disability.

They are currently spreading out the payments for back pay over a year's time period. (I have already received the first payment of backpay). I am currently homeless and won't be able to purchase anything with only the first of three payments. I'm not sure HOW to ask this on the... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Nov 6, 2020

The amount of your installment payments for back pay from Social Security can be increased if you can demonstrate necessary medical needs or debts that relate to necessities, such as housing, food, clothing, or medically necessary services, supplies, equipment or medicine. Follow Social Security... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Civil Rights and Social Security for California on
Q: mom recieves SSA and SSi and FS. She just recieved a 16,666.00 inheritence. How to legally keep w/out losing benefits

My mom is on SSI 163 month, SSA 513 month, part of legally separated hubs ssi 287 month and 153 in food stamps. Total ... She just recieved a cashiers check for 16,666.00 from my grandmas trust as she has passed away. Will my mom lose her benefits? How can we go around them legally so she can keep... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Nov 3, 2020

Since SSI is a needs based program, the countable income and resources are very limited. For information about what is and is not counted start with https://www.ssa.gov/ssi/text-understanding-ssi.htm.

Social Security allows for a person receiving SSI to have a “special needs” or...
Read more »

View More Answers

3 Answers | Asked in Social Security for Indiana on
Q: I have tried to get into my S.S. account, I have been to the office a lot. They send me home with a temp password, don't

help at all. When I sign in it says my information is not correct. I know my info. I have ask them to go into my account and see what is wrong. they won't do it. Today I posted on their page I was FED UP. So they gave me a number for help, I called and was on hold forever so I hung up. What... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Oct 21, 2020

The information you provide to set up your My Social Security account must be the same as the information on your credit report because Social Security uses a "identity services provider" to verify identity by comparing your information against their records. You may want to get a free... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Florida on
Q: So I get Social Security SSI and Medicaid, should I accept a 9,450.00 check will I loose benefits or be cut off
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Oct 20, 2020

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a needs-based program and your countable resources must not be worth more than $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a couple. If the value of your countable resources is over the allowable limit at the beginning of the month, you cannot receive SSI for that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for California on
Q: On SSDI I want to start a GoFundMe acct. to help me move. What is the maximum I can collect without comprimising my SSDI
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Oct 7, 2020

Funds you receive from a GoFundMe or a similar type of fundraising account is considered by Social Security to be unearned income. Unearned income would not affect your SSDI benefits as there is no required limitation for it.

To maintain eligibility for SSI benefits, Medicaid, SNAP (food...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Social Security for Texas on
Q: There was overpayment on family's Survivor's Benefits. Mother is in debt and was told this would not happen. What to do?

My siblings received survivors benefits on behalf of my deceased father until they turned 18. I had a disability that I needed to be supported as well, and after working with a Lawyer I was approved for benefits on the same account, with disabled adult child benefits. He said that this would not... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Oct 4, 2020

I am unsure about the timeframe you are referring to with regard to the claimed overpayment. I want to make sure that you know about a new rule that Social Security has published effective August 27, 2020 in which Social Security acknowledged that it would be against equity and good conscience to... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Social Security for Arkansas on
Q: Can i file for disability in arkansas ?

Im 29 have a bad left shoulder trigger point that causes constant pain and now i have a broken right hand that i had to have surgery on have wire and pin put in the dr said it wil hurt and give me trouble gripping stuff lifting stuff the rest of my life now i am right handed if i can im going to... Read more »

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Oct 2, 2020

Yes, you can file for Social Security disability. The law defines disability as the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security on
Q: I have recently applied for SSDI AND I HAVEBEEN DENIED 2 twice help I need a lawyer
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 30, 2020

You need to decide which disability lawyer you want to hire. To start with this process, go to Justia's "Find a Lawyer" tab and search by Social Security disability and your location. Most disability lawyers have free consultations, so call and talk to the lawyer. You can talk about... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Indiana on
Q: Will returning to my maiden name affect my death benefits?

I've been widowed since 2009 and receive death benefits. I've never remarried and would now like to return to my maiden name. Will legally going back to my maiden name change my death benefits?

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 24, 2020

No, changing your name to your maiden name will not affect Social Security survivor benefits you are receiving since you are not changing your marital status. Once you have your name legally changed, you need to inform Social Security and show them the court order of the name change. To report a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Social Security on
Q: After 17 yes SSD is evalutating my case and want to see their doctor. With this virus must I go?

I do not take meds, they do not interact well with me. I learned to do without and try to live normal. Its difficult but better than becoming addicted to pain killers. My immune is compromised. This virus scares me . will I be kicked off SSI if I call and cancel that appt.

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 18, 2020

It is not in your best interest to cancel the consultative examination. If you refuse to attend the consultative examination, your case may be denied due to failure to cooperate. Call the Social Security claims examiner and ask if they can reschedule a consultative examination virtually. Social... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Social Security for Maryland on
Q: How can an average person know how successful a disability lawyer has been in getting people approved for SSDI?
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 14, 2020

There is no data on individual disability attorney wins Social Security cases that I have found, but there is data on how a disability attorney or representative can improve your chances of being allowed disability benefits. In the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) report GAO-18-37:... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Virginia on
Q: When the vocational expert at the alj hearing says you cant work on a full time basis, does that mean you are disabled?
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 11, 2020

A vocational expert (VE) plays a significant role in a Social Security disability hearing. A VE is an expert witness who knows about job requirements and job availability in the current labor market. At the hearing before the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), the VE will give his expert opinion in... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Florida on
Q: Can a class action suit be filed against a federal agency like the Social Security Administration?
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 10, 2020

Yes, a class action suit can be filed against the Social Security Administration or another federal agency. In fact, there have been several class action suits against the Social Security Administration that have either resulted in a favorable settlement or adjudication. A well-known case, Sullivan... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security on
Q: My wife broke her arm on May 18 2020. She hasn't worked since and still gets PT. Could she have filed for SSI?
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Sep 6, 2020

Social Security is not a short-term or partial disability program. In order to be disabled under Social Security, a person must meet the strict definition of disability which is the inability to do any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Florida on
Q: I am 24 years old. If I apply for SSI and received benefits does that preclude me from ever receiving SSDI benefits?

For example, say I am unable to work for 3 years and receive SSI benefits. Then I am able to work for 4 years and then again I am unable to work. Would I then be able to apply for SSDI?

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Aug 25, 2020

If you are disabled and apply for SSI benefits now, you should first check to see if you are insured for SSDI benefits now based on the rules for younger workers who become disabled.

As a general rule, to qualify for Social Security benefits based on a disability other than blindness, you...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Colorado on
Q: My wife is hospitalized currently and will require long-term care within a medical facility.

She is at an almost vegetative state. I am her POA for medical and wanted to see about SSD. She has filed in the past but was denied. With her current condition, can I apply for SSD for her via a lawyer?

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Aug 21, 2020

Yes, you can file for SSDI on your wife's behalf or you can hire a disability attorney to file the application for her.

The Social Security disability application is online at https://www.ssa.gov/benefits/disability/.

For Social Security, the law defines disability as the...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Florida on
Q: Will SSA continue to give me SSDI benefits when I work 35 hours a week but earn $1190 a month which is under SGA?

I'm currently on SSDI benefits for 5 years. I just started a job last May. I wonder if I can continue to have benefits with many hours a week? I'm deaf.

Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer answered on Aug 16, 2020

Yes, you can do a limited amount of work and still get disability benefits. Social Security encourages work activity and there are special program rules and work incentives that help you try to return to work while still receiving monthly disability payments.

If you try to work but have...
Read more »

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.