Can I collect Social Security and Work Part-Time?

I have been healthy and physically active for 30 years. Gym workouts 3-5 days a week, constant nutritional emphasis and always take daily vitamins. In 2014 I had an accident that caused me to break my Calcaneus (heel bone). I was told by a reputable surgeon that it would be arthritic all my life. His diagnosis was correct and the pain seems to be getting worse. Most days it is manageable, but sitting for long periods of time and getting up takes a few minutes to gain ankle movement without pain. If I’m on my feet during the day, the arthritic pain the following day can take hours to subside.

I’ve worked full-time since I was 13 and put myself through college, so I’ve always been very self-sufficient. I will be 59 in October and lost my corporate job due to restructuring. Given my age and current state of employment in the US, I am concerned that I may be forced to take a position for significantly less money, while the pain worsens over time. I would like to know the possibility of claiming Social Security disability benefits now and how that may affect any effort to work part-time in the future. Do you see this type of injury as a disability?


Michael, you are in a tough spot. When a person applies for ssdi they need to be unable to perform the duties of any occupation for which you have experience, education and training. If you can work part time and earn more than $1,000 a month then you likely will not be eligible for ssdi.  If you work for an employer full time that offers you long term disability insurance, then after 12 months of policy coverage you could file for disability without any worries of a pre existing condition.

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