Former beneficiaries with disabilities who are unable to continue working because of their disability have five years during which they may request immediate reinstatement of Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)benefits without filing a new disability application.
We believe that this expedited reinstatement of benefits is a welcome change in the law. The fear of failure and risk of losing benefits for a prolonged period has kept many people from trying to work even when they wanted to. In addition, this provision of the law provides more opportunities for Americans with disabilities to participate in the workforce and lessen their dependence on public benefits.
To take advantage of this provision, beneficiaries must be unable to work because of their medical condition. They must file the request for reinstatement of their benefits with Social Security within 60 months from the month their prior disability benefits terminated.
People who take advantage of this new law will receive temporary benefits as well as Medicare or Medicaid for up to six months while Social Security evaluates their medical condition. If the medical evaluation is unfavorable, generally the temporary benefits will not have to be paid back. If the medical evaluation is favorable, their benefits will be continued.
For more information, call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY: 1-800-325-0778) and ask for the publication, Working While Disabled How We Can Help. You should also visit our work website at www.ssa.gov/work.