This is a popular question, so I wanted to share as much as I know about it.
The FIRST consideration is, are you on disability, and what type of disability. Certain types of disability are filed in such a way that prevent you “working”, others that prevent you from “earning money at all”, and others that allow you to earn a very small amount of money.
CAN YOU EARN MONEY?
The problem is that you claiming to be “disabled”, either partially or in full, you can no longer work at the job that you used to do.
I understand that we, as survivors, have high sensitivity to crowds, noises, brightly lit spaces, multi-tasking, and the frenetic life and work styles that we had pre-injury and stroke. Just about every survivor that I have met, including myself, deals with this dichotomy:
I can’t do what I used to do at the pace that I used to it.
I can do something, for much less hours per day, less days per week, yet I can do it well.
I have lost some of old skills, but not all. I am still very valuable!
I also some new skills
Now you have to curb some of this enthusiasm with your insurance’s rules and regulations. For example, I receive two types of insurance payments. SDI, which is my State Disability Payment, and will at age 65 automatically switch over to my Federal retirement benefit.
MAY YOU EARN MONEY?
While I was working, my employer over private disability insurance. The employer paid a portion and I paid a portion. Though this was an optional plan, I fortunately never opted out. This supplemental insurance has very tight restrictions. It is enforce to age 65, and pays 65% of pre-disability income. The two major restrictions are, I am not allowed to even earn 0.01 as long as I am collecting this insurance, and second, I must be willing to take medical exams to proof my continued disability.
With State SDI and even retirement the rules vary, from zero-no-tolerance, to just over allowing you to earn just over 1,000 per month. If you earn more than the rules allow, you will penalized by deductions in your insurance or retirement coverage.
What about earning money “under the table”?
Don’t do this. You can possibly claim ignorance or an accounting error for incorrectly reported expenses, but the IRS is UNFORGIVING for unreported income. There is so much risk in doing this. Just watch TV.
Ok, so you’ve done your homework, and you want to work, now what.
HOW TO EARN MONEY?
The key to the American economy has always been:
Find a need. Is there something that people hate doing, or put off doing forever.
Create a need. Convince people that they are doing something the hard way
Fill the need. Be the person or company to solve the need that people have.
I can tell you that there is an endless list of things that people and companies do that they really don’t want to do or hire a full time person for.
But then you want to think about, what are my skills? What are the things that I can really do?
“send me you documents, I will scan at only $xx.xx per page and return your documents and all documents on PDF
Small offices – doctors
“send me your photographs, I will scan all at high resolution
Send me your paper documents
I will create a searchable excel sheet with mail merge
I will enter everything into a database
I will come into office for 2 weeks, 2 hours per day
I will type all your paper into you’re a database
I will type all your data into excel
You must get license for this
I can assemble any small items that you need
Work at a Charitable organization
Most charitable organizations recognize your limitations