Publication Date

January 2007


[Excerpt] Fear of risking benefits is a major factor that keeps many individuals with disabilities from joining the workforce. When people with disabilities decide to seek employment, one of their key concerns is how employment will impact their Social Security and housing benefits. They feel certain that they will lose their benefits, including the public health insurance that so many rely on for themselves and their families. Benefit regulations can be complex and confusing. However, in many cases there are misunderstandings concerning the impact that employment will have on an individual’s benefits. Many benefit policies allow for gradual transition into employment and provide “safety net” features in case the job does not work out. Work Incentive programs allow people to “set aside” or exclude certain expenses from earned employment income, resulting in less reduction of their cash benefits.