Will a GoFundMe Campaign Affect My SSD?

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Will a GoFundMe Campaign Affect My SSD? 

If you’re unable to work due to a disability, you may be struggling with medical bills and other expenses. While Social Security disability (SSD) is intended to provide income for people in just that situation, it can take months or years to get approved for SSD. Even after you’re approved, there’s a waiting period for Medicare, which means you may need to find other ways to cover medical expenses in the short term. 

Many people in this situation are uncertain about what they can and can’t do to try to get by while waiting for an SSD determination or for Medicare benefits to kick in. The good news is that a fundraising effort like a GoFundMe campaign to pay medical bills will not impact your SSD–it won’t affect your application, and it won’t affect the benefits you’re already receiving. But, to ensure that your benefits are secure, it’s important to understand why a GoFundMe doesn’t impact SSD, and how Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is different. 

SSD is Not a Need-Based Program

You may know that your earnings can disqualify you from Social Security disability benefits. That leads many people to worry that any income or assets they have may affect eligibility. But, SSD isn’t based on financial need. It’s an insurance-type program that workers pay for through FICA withholding or self-employment taxes. You can be a millionaire and still collect SSD if you have sufficient work credits and the Social Security Administration (SSA) considers you disabled. 

The reason earned income counts against you is that if you’re able to earn a certain amount in a month through work ($1,550 in 2024 unless you’re blind–then it’s $2,590), the SSA doesn’t consider you disabled. Other sources of income like a GoFundMe campaign, gifts, income on investments, trust payouts, and even winning the lottery don’t count. 

SSI is Based on Financial Need

SSI is a needs-based program that is not funded through payroll deductions. Therefore, income from a wider range of sources is considered when determining eligibility–whether you earned that income or not. In other words, if you are receiving SSI or applying for SSI, the money you get through a campaign like a GoFundMe can disqualify you. 

Applying for SSD Benefits And Concerned Your GoFundMe Will Affect The Process?  

The experienced disability benefits at Disability Help Group know this type of question is just one example of the many ways the SSD application and appeals process can be confusing. Small mistakes can delay benefits or result in denial. To learn more about how we put our experience to work for people like you, call 800-800-3332 right now, or fill out our contact form here.

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