What You Need to Tell the Social Security Administration About Your Life After Benefits Begin

Once you are approved and begin receiving Social Security disability benefits, your communication with the Social Security Administration (SSA) is not over. There are certain times when you are required to notify the SSA of changes to your circumstances. These changes may impact your benefits. Even if they do not, you are still required to report them to the SSA.

The following is a list of examples of situations where you must notify the Social Security Administration:

  • If you take a job or become self-employed. This is true regardless of how much income you earn. You will have to report how many hours you anticipate working and when the work will start or stop.
  • If you apply for, begin receiving, or stop receiving other disability benefits, such as workers’ compensation or disability benefits from federal, state, or local government programs.
  • If you move or plan to move. The SSA must be notified of your new address and phone number.
  • If you switch to a new bank or open a new bank account for receiving Social Security disability benefits. This information can be changed online or by telephone. It takes approximately 30 to 60 days for the information to be changed. During that time, old accounts should not be closed.
  • If you no longer have the ability to manage your own money. The Social Security Administration will make arrangements to send your benefits to someone else who agrees to use the funds for your benefit. This person is known as a “representative payee.”
  • If you receive a pension from your former job for which you did not pay Social Security taxes.
  • If you get married or divorced.
  • If you change your name.
  • If there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest for certain felony offenses.
  • If you are convicted of a crime.
  • If you violate a condition of parole or probation.
  • If you leave the United States for 30 consecutive days or more.
  • If you are no longer a U.S. citizen.

You may report these changes online, by phone, or in person at a Social Security office.

To learn more about your ongoing obligations relating to Social Security disability benefits, we invite you to follow us on Facebook or to read our FREE book, Social Security Disability: What You Need to Know.

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