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Disability benefits after conviction of crime

I was arrested earlier this week for an alleged crime that I did not do. Is it true that if I'm convicted of a crime I can lose my Social Security Disability Benefits?? Is there anything I can do about that?

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You didn't give much information about the "alleged" crime, and the answer may depend on whether you are convicted for a felony or misdemeanor and whether you actually spend any time in jail.   20 CFR 404.468 (A federal regulation) states in relevant part:


No monthly benefits will be paid to any individual for any month any part of which the individual is confined in a jail, prison, or other penal institution or correctional facility for conviction of a felony. This rule applies to disability benefits (§404.315) and child’s benefits based on disability (§404.350) effective with benefits payable for months beginning on or after October 1, 1980. For all other monthly benefits, this rule is effective with benefits payable for months beginning on or after May 1, 1983. However, it applies only to the prisoner; benefit payments to any other person who is entitled on the basis of the prisoner’s wages and self-employment income are payable as though the prisoner were receiving benefits.


My interpretation of this regulation is that your disability benefits will be temporarily stopped if you are convicted of a felony AND required to spend time in prison.  However, the last sentence suggests that if your family is receiving auxiliary benefits because of your disability, those will continue during your incarceration.  For more information about SSDI, visit our Massachusetts Disability Law Discussion Forum.


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