6 ways to stay afloat while waiting for disability benefits

On Behalf of | Mar 16, 2023 | Social Security Disability

If you suffer from a disabling condition and you’re unable to work as a result, then you know the financial struggles that can result. Although Social Security disability benefits can provide you with the relief and stability that you need to pay for your housing, food, utilities, and medical treatment, the process of obtaining these benefits can take a significant period of time.

In fact, most disability claims take several months to resolve. If your case is complicated or your initial claim is denied and you have to appeal that determination, then the process can take even longer. But you’re facing financial challenges today, so what can you do to keep yourself afloat until your disability benefits come through?

What you can do to get by while you wait for your disability claim to resolve

Even though you’re stressed about your finances right now, there are steps that you can take to alleviate the pressures that you’re facing. Here are some of your options:

  1. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families: This is a public assistance program that provides direct cash payments to low income families and those who have children. This money can be used to help offset your living expenses. Although the support is temporary in nature, it can still help you bridge the gap until you hopefully recover disability benefits.
  2. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: These SNAP benefits, called CalFresh in California, are based on your income and can provide significant support in paying food costs. As a result, you can free up other funds to cover your other needs.
  3. Medicaid: If you haven’t already, you should consider enrolling in Medicaid if you qualify. This government program works like insurance, covering most, if not all, of your medical expenses. This can be crucial if you’re trying to treat your injury or illness at a time when you’re unable to work.
  4. Charitable support: A lot of disabled individuals are too proud to ask for help, but there are a lot of organizations out there that are ready to help you. Don’t be ashamed to ask for the assistance that you need. After all, these charities might be able to help you with everything from housing costs to transportation and phone bills.
  5. Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program: This is another government assistance program, but one that’s targeted at helping low-income families with their heating and cooling costs. Through this program, you might be able to obtain assistance in certain energy-related repairs, and you might get help paying your utility bills.
  6. Part-time work: You can claim disability benefits even if you earn a little bit of income. Keep in mind that the limit is pretty low, at just over $1,400 a month. But that income can be huge when you’re just trying to get by while you wait for the outcome of your disability claim. If you’re going to work, just make sure that you’re extremely careful with how much you work and how much you earn so that you don’t jeopardize your claim.

Know how to position yourself for financial success

Figuring out how to pay your bills can be stressful enough as it is, but it can feel crushing when you’re also struggling to deal with your disabling injury or illness. But you don’t have to walk this road on your own. Instead, you can have a competent legal professional by your side who can provide you with advice and aggressive advocacy. Hopefully with this help in your corner you can obtain the outcome that best positions you for long-term financial stability as you figure out how to live the best life possible with your disability.