If you are unable to work for more than one year as a result of a disability, you may be eligible to collect Social Security Disability benefits. Your condition can be physical and/or mental in nature and may be permanent or temporary.

If your disability resulted directly from your job, you may also be eligible for workers’ compensation. It is possible to collect both benefits at the same time. However, under certain circumstances, collecting workers’ compensation can reduce the amount of your SSD benefits.

Workers’ compensation versus SSD

The idea behind both types of benefits is to compensate you for your disability, not for you to profit from it. As a result, the total amount of monthly benefits that you receive from SSD and workers’ compensation cannot exceed 80% of what you earned on average before becoming disabled. If the Social Security Administration determines that you are receiving more than that amount, it will reduce your SSD benefit to bring you under the 80% benchmark.

Public versus private benefits

Note that this rule only applies to public disability benefits. Payments from private sources, such as insurance benefits or private pensions, do not reduce the amount of SSD you can receive. Also, there are some private benefits you can receive that do not affect your SSD payment. These include Supplemental Security Income and Veterans Administration benefits.

Work-related versus nonwork-related

You should also know that a public disability payment does not have to be work-related to affect your SSD benefits. For instance, if you worked for local or state government and receive retirement benefits based on disability, those can reduce your SSD payments. Other examples include temporary disability benefits at the state level and civil service disability benefits.

The reduction in your disability benefits does not last forever. Once you reach retirement age, you may receive the full benefit. Report any changes to your other benefits to the Social Security Administration right away.