Ask Larry

Is There An Asset Limit For DAC/RSDI Beneficiaries?

I am a Disabled Adult Child switched from SSI a few months ago, drawing off my retired father's work record. I am deaf with low vision. I have difficulty understanding rules regarding RSDI benefits.

1. I need to be sure there are no asset limits for DAC/RSDI beneficiaries. Here are some example assets: Owning a house, savings, contributions from family and/or friends, inheritances from parents when they pass away, etc. Note: I am dually eligible for Medicaid and Medicare, but have not yet renewed Medicaid at this point.

2. The work rules for a person who is blind and receiving DAC/RSDI: Is the 9-month Trial Period a one-time occurrence? For example:

If I complete 9 non-consecutive months within the 60-month period that count as total work months... then begin the extended 36-month eligibility period... and cannot keep working after this... Then if I decide to try again ten years later, will there be another 9-month trial period and another extended 36-month eligibility period?

3. Confused with how earnings affect my DAC/RSDI benefits: AFTER the extended 36-month eligibility period is completed, then my benefits are terminated regardless of whether earnings are at or below $2,040/month?

4. What is the best strategy for a parent to choose when taking into consideration maximizing not only her Social Security benefits but also that of her Disabled Adult Child? This is for my mother who is 62.

Thank you and kind regards,

Hi Passion,

I'll just address your questions in order:

1) No, there is no asset limit for Social Security disabled adult child's (DAC) benefits or Medicare, and none of the examples you cited would affect those benefits. I have no expertise with regard to Medicaid, though, so I can't answer any questions about that program.

2) Yes, you only get one 9 month trial work period (TWP).

3) The monthly earnings amount currently considered to be substantial gainful activity (SGA) is $1,220 for non-blind individuals, or $2,040 if you've been determined by Social Security to be statutorily blind. If you perform SGA after your TWP is completed then your period of DAC benefit entitlement would be determined to have ceased. The extended period of eligibility starts after the TWP ends, and continues for at least 36 months. During the EPE, your DAC benefits can be paid for any months in which your earnings don't exceed SGA level. However, if you earn in excess of the SGA limit after 36 months have elapsed since the end of your TWP and after your DAC benefit entitlement has been determined to have ceased, your entitlement would terminate. After that you could only be resume payment of DAC benefits if you reapply and are approved (

4) There is not a single 'best' filing strategy for a parent with a disabled adult child. Too many other variables are involved. The disabled child couldn't get benefits until the parent starts drawing their benefits, but if the parent starts drawing early they'll likely be stuck with a reduced benefit rate for as long as they live. Your mother may want to strongly consider using our software ( to explore and compare her options so she can choose the best possible strategy for claiming benefits.

Best, Jerry

Sep 26 2019 - 5:22pm
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