The Social Security/Workers’ Compensation Offset
Injured workers who have been (or are expected to be) totally disabled for at least 12 months may also be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. If so, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will apply an “offset” to most worker’s disability benefit. SSA applies a formula based on your “average current earnings” (ACE) which is generally your average monthly wages in the 3 years prior to your disability. SSA then calculates 80% of your ACE, which is the maximum you can receive in combined monthly social security and workers compensation benefits. This offset can also affect lump sum settlements. It is important to understand the relationship between Social Security and Workers’ Compensation benefits to make sure you are receiving the maximum amount. If you have questions check with your local SSA office, or contact Philip H. Garrow for a free case evaluation and explanation.