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Martha

Part 3 of 3

How does the BOND benefit offset help Martha earn more and still keep SSDI benefits?

Because Martha is in BOND and eligible for the benefit offset, instead of losing her entire benefit, Martha will keep most of it. So her total income (relative to current policy) will only decrease by $1 for every $2 she earns above the BOND yearly amount (annualized SGA level of $12,120 in 2012 for a non-blind individual).

The comparison is made on an annual basis, comparing the BOND yearly amount to Martha's estimated earnings for all of 2012. (Martha plans to tutor summer school students as well, so she will work all 12 months of the year.)

Martha's new SSDI benefit will be calculated as follows:

Step 1 Annual estimate of gross earnings ($1,200/month for 12 months) $14,400
Step 2 Total BOND countable wages are the same (assumes no impairment-related work expenses) $14,400
Step 3 BOND yearly amount in 2012 (for a non-blind individual) $12,120
Step 4 Subtract the amount in Step 3 from the amount determined in Step 2 $2,280
Step 5 Divide the amount determined in Step 4 by 2 (for $1 for $2) $1,140
Step 6 Divide the amount determined in Step 5 by 12 (12 months in the offset period for this year) $95

These steps assume that Martha will work an average of 60 hours per month for the entire 12 months of 2012 and that she will not need to incur special impairment-related expenses in order to work. The offset amount applied to her monthly benefit, calculated in Step 6, is what will be subtracted from her monthly SSDI benefit check.

So Martha's monthly benefit amount will be just $95 lower than previously: $1,500 − $95 = $1,405. Martha's SSDI benefit under BOND, combined with her monthly earnings, will give her an income of $2,605 per month. This is $1,405 more per month than she would receive if she were not part of BOND. Over the course of the year, her total income will be $16,860 greater ($31,260 − $14,400 = $16,860).

Future Income Under BOND Policy
  Monthly Annual
Earnings $1,200 $14,400
SSDI benefit $1,405 $16,860
Total income $2,605 $31,260

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