Social Security Programs and
Disability Benefit Planning Services

  • Do you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)?

  • Do you know what happens to your benefits when you go to work?

  • Are you concerned that, if you go to work, you will lose your cash benefits?

  • Are you worried that, if you go to work, you will lose your Medi-Cal or Medicare benefits?

  • Are you concerned about the need to quit your next job, because of your disability, and then you won’t be able to get back on disability benefits?

Don’t let these common myths about Social Security disability benefits and employment prevent you from going to work. Knowing the facts about work incentives and employment supports will allow you to remain in control of your finances and health care during your transition to work and financial independence.

Now, here are the FACTS:

  • There are employment supports in place to ensure you don’t lose your cash benefits prematurely.

  • There are Medi-Cal and Medicare programs designed specifically for people with disabilities who go to work.

  • If you have to stop working because of your disability, you can reinstate your benefits without a new application.

Let's Learn More!

Are you receiving SSI?

  • Great news! You are always better off financially when you work while receiving SSI.

  • Social Security counts less than half of your earned income when you are receiving SSI.

Are you receiving SSDI?

  • Here’s more great news! Keep your full SSDI benefits while you test your ability to work for at least 9 months.

  • Your SSDI check will be there if you need it for a period of time!

What about Medi-Cal and Medicare?

  • Keep your Medi-Cal long-term even if you don’t receive an SSI check anymore.

  • Keep your Medicare for at least 8 years after you start working! Pay the premium, and you can keep it even longer.

  • You can earn up to $73,920 per year and maintain your Medi-Cal through the Medi-Cal Working Disabled program!

  • You can continue to receive Medicare while employed.

  • You may be able to keep Medi-Cal and/or Medicare along with your private health insurance.

Still Not Convinced?

Watch the DOR "I Can Work" video to see how former DOR Consumers, receiving SSI and SSDI, became successfully employed with the help of available work incentives.

Where can I start learning about these services?

  • Talk to your DOR counselor to see if you are eligible for DOR Work Incentive Planning (WIP) Services. We also offer specialized WIP Services for students!

  • Contact the DOR Social Security Programs Unit Help Line at or toll free at (866) 449-2730.

Learn more

Additional Resources

Interested in learning more? Check out these great free resources to learn more about disability benefits, health benefits, and other resources at your own pace.

Not currently receiving DOR Services?

If you are ready to start an exciting journey with DOR, please click here to get started. You will need to provide additional information about yourself to request services.

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