Social Security Benefits

News & Analysis as of

A Short Primer on SSI Income Rules

The rules for how income will reduce a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiary's monthly benefit can be very confusing. Here is a quick look at how the Social Security Administration (SSA) treats an SSI beneficiary's...more

Recreational Vehicles and Government Benefits Are Not a Walk in the Park

If you own or are thinking of owning a recreational vehicle (RV), you need to consider the vehicle's impact on your government benefits, especially Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid....more

Disability Beneficiaries Reaches Record High

Disability claims have reached a record high, according to the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA’s two disability programs – Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) – are...more

Marriage and SSD benefits

Most Chicago residents know that changes in living situation, such as increases in income or a return to work, can affect a person’s eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits. ...more

Should I Disinherit a Child with Special Needs?

Inexperienced or incompetent estate planning attorneys have a bad habit of telling parents of children with special needs to simply write their child out of their estate plan altogether in order to ensure that the child will...more

Social Security Disability for children and how it works

Parents who are raising a disabled child in Illinois may struggle to provide for the child’s care and special expenses. Many parents wonder about the availability of outside support, such as Social Security Disability...more

ERISA-Disability: 1 in 3 Social Security Administration Disability Determinations Involve Mental Disorder Diagnosis

As you know, ERISA plan administrators must consider Social Security Administration (SSA) disability determinations when making the disability benefit decision. ERISA plan administrators are not bound by the SSA’s...more

Seeking SSD benefits for blindness

Blindness affects more than 1 million Americans over the age of 40, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology. The condition can introduce significant medical expenses and markedly restrict a person’s abilities. Many...more

Social Security Disability is available for certain mental disorders

Mental disorders affects tens of millions of people in the U.S, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. For many Chicago residents, these disorders are highly debilitating. In 2012, over 9.6 million American...more

Think Carefully Before Giving Gift Cards to an SSI Recipient

The holidays are here and most families are busy shopping for gifts for their loved ones. According to the National Retail Federation, gift cards are once again expected to be the most popular gift given because they are easy...more

Illinois Supreme Court Agrees to Decide How Social Security Benefits Offset in Divorce Settlement

In the closing days of its September term, the Illinois Supreme Court agreed to decide an issue of potential importance to the domestic relations bar: how are Social Security benefits treated in a property settlement during a...more

Social Security Benefits to Inch Up 1.7 Percent in 2015

The nation's elderly and disabled Social Security recipients will receive a 1.7 percent increase in payments in 2015. This is expected to raise the average monthly payment for the typical retired worker by $22. The increase...more

What's the Difference Between Medicare and Medicaid in the Context of Long-Term Care?

Although their names are confusingly alike, Medicaid and Medicare are quite different programs. Both programs provide health coverage, but Medicare is an “entitlement” program, meaning that everyone who reaches age 65 and is...more

Class Representative’s Motion To Remand For Insufficient Amount In Controversy Doesn’t Add Up

A Kentucky federal court recently ruled that a class plaintiff may not defeat removal by understating the aggregate amount in controversy alleged in her complaint....more

When Life Changes, the Social Security Administration Needs to Know

While the Social Security Administration (SSA) frequently conducts reviews to make sure that people who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) are still eligible for those...more

When is the optimal time to begin receiving Social Security?

When to begin receiving Social Security benefits depends on each person’s individual circumstances. This article shows how to determine a breakeven point — the age at which the dollar value of more (but smaller) payments...more

Reasonable attorney fees did not include underlying administrative hearing process against Social Services, court determines

In K.I. v. Wagner, 2014 DJDAR 5546 (2014), the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District granted partial attorney fees in a social security proceeding. An attorney represented a minor who was disabled by...more

11th Circuit Court of Appeals Mandates Proactive Gathering and Review of SSA Information in LTD Benefit Review

Not long ago, the Unites States Supreme Court in MetLife v. Glenn, 128 S. Ct. 2343 (2008) gave a stern warning to plan fiduciaries who required a claimant to apply for disability benefits with the Social Security...more

Divorce and Retirement: Social Security Administration vs. California Family Law

According to the Social Security Administration’s website, the 1983 Social Security Amendments included a provision for raising the full retirement age beginning with people born in 1938 or later. The Congress cited...more

2014 COLAs For Employee Benefit Plans

The Internal Revenue Service has announced the 2014 cost of living adjustments to various limits on employee benefit plans. The adjusted amounts generally apply for plan years beginning in 2014. ...more

Benefit Limits and Contributions for 2014

The Commissioner of Internal Revenue has adjusted the dollar limitations for benefits and contributions that apply to retirement plans. The Social Security Administration has also increased the Social Security taxable wage...more

The Impact of Windsor on Social Security Benefits and FMLA Rights

In light of the U.S. Supreme Court in United States v. Windsor, which struck the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) provision limiting marriage to opposite sex spouses, the government agencies have been working on updating...more

Government Benefits For Nursing Home Care

For those nursing home (and assisted living) patients who can qualify financially, Medicaid will provide coverage for as long as needed, unlike the very minimal 100 day maximum under Medicare. As a general rule, the patient...more

A Review Of The Supreme Court’s 2012-2013 Term

As the United States Supreme Court’s 2012-2013 term drew to a close at the end of June, commentators observed a continuing gradual but perceptible shift to the right by the Court. The Roberts Court is generally viewed as...more

How Does The Supreme Court’s DOMA Decision Impact Employers?

The U. S. Supreme Court has declared unconstitutional a portion of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which had established a federal definition of marriage as a legal union only between one man and one woman....more

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