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Hello All,


Recently my employer cut me back to half of full-time hours (they are in a bad way financially). I was given the choice of a reduced full-time wage rate, or part -time (but keep all benefits). Needless to say, I jumped at the chance to go to part-time and keep benefits (they were surprised - they were expecting a difficult discussion). I had been giving disability a lot of thought lately - spending most of my weekends in bed with fatigue, constantly short of breath, difficulty walking, etc. I've always been skeptical of "entitlement" programs - what with having spent years in management and seeing many instances where the only disability was laziness.


This was my first week on the part-time schedule and I feel like a person again! Able to get a little more done then a quick weekend trip to the store and back in bed!


But the issue regards going to part-time. If, at a later date, I must take complete disability, will the payment be based on my lower part-time earnings? If that's the case, should I put in for some sort of partial disability now? Could I do this now to supplement my reduced earnings?.


I know that Social Security does not accept partial disability, and I like wroking part-time. But there are state (Ca) programs that may. Also, I have long term disability insurance through work at 66.6% of my salary (less any government benefits).


Friends say I'm crazy to be skeptical - that if anyone should be on disability it's me.


Anyone been in a similar situation? Any advice?






CREST (CRST) since 1977

Sjogren's since 1999

Burkitt's Lymphoma in 2002, culminating in autologous stem cell transplant in Jan, 2003. (cancer seems in permanent remission [it is such an aggressive form that it is usually back in 6 - 8 weeks if not wiped out], but treatment left me with much worse sclero symptoms and peripheral neuropathy in my feet).

Secondary Pulmonary Hypertension, 2005

Complete right hip replacement, 2005

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Hi Craig,


I am so glad you have gone to part time. It sounds like you are getting more enjoyment out of life now. What a bonus to be able to keep your benefits!


I'm sorry, I don't have any answers to your disability question. If it's the same as Social Security, my mother-in-law says it doesn't pay her to work even part time because they will reduce her SS income based on whatever she earns.


I know someone else more qualified will answer for you.


Enjoy your new free time and increased energy!

Take care,



Serena Justis

ISN Blogger

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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I don't know the answers to your specific questions, but I do know that people on Social Security disability can work part-time there is a cap of the salary. I am on disability , but I don't work at all.


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Hi Craig,


What a dilemma to be in... I sure feel for you.


It's really sad, when those of us who must work, just in order to qualify so we can have medical benefits to cover our medical bills.... I've been infuriated with that for years :angry: !


You are absolutely right... there are those on disability... who are sponging and yet there are those who truly need to have it and can't... or have such difficulty getting it... as we so often witness right here... on this forum!

The government should be ashamed.... OOOOOOOOOOOOOO... don't even get me started! <_<


Sorry.... because I'm on permanent disability, I am unable to answer your question(s), but with the information some have provided here, along with going to the '.gov' site, you may be able to get answers to your questions, should you prefer to find out without talking to someone at Social Security. However... my hubby has found that by calling the SS office, he's been able to get many questions answered... and to his satisfaction.


Good luck with this, Craig... It's an enormous decision to have to make. However, it doesn't sound like your in any better shape than any of the rest of us. I can't imagine attempting to work now... Those "spoons" get used up quickly anytime I have to "draw" on them, believe me!



Special Hugs,


Susie Kraft

ISN Support Specialist

ISN Chat Host

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Your friends are right. You probably should have gone out on disability while considered a full time employee. You could have come back to work with part time hours but you would have been considered a full time employee and as such would more than likely have maintined your full time wage scale for calculating disability. I would talk to an atty. that specializes in employment law. He/she will request a copy of your company's disability plan document which you will need to get from your company. Based on his/her review, you will have a definite answer to your question. Good Luck Gidget

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