I want to do some volunteer work. Will it impact my Social Security disability eligibility if I do unpaid work while receiving benefits?

SSDI and volunteer workYou ask an important question. You may be unable to work a regular job, but you may still want to contribute to your community or to your family as best you can. Accordingly, you may decide to do some volunteer work or to help family or friends with childcare or eldercare responsibilities. Either arrangement may be much more flexible than a paying job and allow you the time and freedom that you need to take care of your health issues.

However, before you sign up for volunteer work or offer to take care of a relative or friend, it is important to consider two things:

  1. How much time will you be giving to these volunteer activities? If the time approaches full time work or if you are on a rigid schedule then the only difference between volunteer work and a job may be the lack of pay you receive. However, if you have a lot of flexibility in hours and you only work a few hours a week then your volunteer work may be significantly different than paid employment.
  2. What tasks will you be performing? It is important that your tasks do not conflict with the information that you provided the Social Security Administration.

Volunteer work has a lot of benefits. It can provide you with a reason to leave the house, with social opportunities, and with a sense of purpose. However, the Social Security Administration is concerned with whether you have the ability to earn an income. If you volunteer many hours a week and perform many of the same tasks that are required in a paying job then it could impact your eligibility.

It is important to discuss your volunteer activities with your Social Security disability lawyer so that you can have a full understanding of how they could impact your Social Security disability eligibility. To learn more about your specific situation, please contact us today to schedule a confidential consultation.

Carl M. Weisbrod
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Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law