There are a number of rules that apply to receiving Social Security benefits and receiving work income for the same time period. To understand these, first differentiate between receiving benefits under the Social Security insurance programs, as compared to receiving benefits under the needs-based program called Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Insurance programs include Social Security Disability Insurance, Retirement Insurance, and dependency or survivors’ benefits such as Child’s Benefits, Wife’s or Husband’s Benefits, and Widow’s or Widower’s Benefits.
If you aren’t sure which benefit you are receiving, insurance benefits are paid on the 3rd or some later day in the month, and SSI is paid on the 1st of the month. Some individuals receive benefits from both programs.
The rule for SSI is simple: Benefits will be reduced dollar for dollar after the first $65 plus one-half the remainder of gross earnings each month. Earnings of a spouse or parent for an eligible child living in the household can also reduce benefits.
However, reductions due to work income and Social Security insurance benefits are more complicated to understand and calculate. These are a few of the rules that apply in 2014:
Total benefits payable on a Worker’s record may be reduced due to the Family Maximum Amount.
In planning your benefit amount before receiving benefits, the application of these rules to your benefits should be verified by contacting the Social Security Administration and specifically applying your own record or entitlement to the inquiry. Many questions can be answered by going online to the Social Security website, www.socialsecurity.gov.