Will I Qualify for Disability If I Was Paid Under the Table?

If your employer pays you under the table, it can be difficult for you to obtain disability benefits, but it is possible. A disability lawyer can help you determine if you qualify for disability if you were paid under the table.

The attorneys at the Disability Advantage Group, have years of experience handling disability benefit claims for workers who are unable to work due to a serious injury or medical condition. Call us today at 865-566-0800 for a free case evaluation.

How Can I Qualify for Disability If I Do Not Receive a Regular Paycheck?

Though it may be challenging, you may be able to receive benefits even if your employer paid you under the table.

The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program requires that workers contribute to the disability fund for a number of years through payroll tax deductions before they can collect benefits. In order to qualify for benefits, you will need to have accumulated a certain number of work credits by the time you became disabled. The number of credits you require depends on various factors, including:

  • Your age;
  • How many years you have worked;
  • How many years it has been since you last worked; and
  • Your yearly wages or self-employment income.

Generally, workers can earn up to four credits every year. The wages required to earn a credit changes every year. In 2017, you can earn one credit for each $1,300—up to the four-credit maximum.

If you receive payment under the table, that means that neither you nor your employer have paid payroll taxes. Therefore, you have not contributed to the disability fund. Without those contributions, you may not be able to collect enough work credits to qualify for disability benefits.

However, if you classified your under-the-table earnings as self-employment or miscellaneous income on your tax returns, you paid Social Security taxes on the amount entered. That contribution counts toward your work credits, meaning you may qualify for disability.

Employees paid under the table may also be able to recover benefits under a need-based Social Security program like Supplemental Security Income (SSI)—if they meet the income limits to qualify for SSI.

What If I Receive Partial Payment Under the Table?

Wait staff and other service industry employees typically receive tips in addition to taxable wages. If an employee fails to report their tips on their tax return, this income will not help them earn work credits. As a result, employees that receive partial payment under the table may not qualify for benefits from the SSDI program.

How Can I Get Help From a Disability Attorney?

Getting paid under the table can compromise your chances of receiving disability benefits. However, if you contact the Disability Advantage Group, you can rest assured that we will do whatever we can to help make the application process easier. Call 865-566-0800 today to find out more about how to win disability benefits.

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