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*This scenario was not updated with the 2021 POD threshold and offset amount.

Andre, who is not blind, is self-employed as an IT professional. He has no impairment-related work expenses. Explore how Andre’s income will change under the new POD rules.

Net profit for the year $18,000
Average net monthly earnings $1,500
SSDI benefit $1,100/month

Andre’s IT consulting business did well last year. He reported a net profit of $18,000 on last year’s tax returns. With this profit level, Andre’s average monthly earnings are $1,500, which is higher than the Substantial Gainful Activity level ($1,180 for 2018). Andre’s monthly SSDI benefit is $1,100. The table below shows Andre’s income under current SSA rules and the new POD rules.

  • Current SSA rules: Andre’s monthly income will change depending on whether he has completed his Trial Work Period (TWP).  If Andre earns $1,500, his monthly income in the TWP will be $2,600. After the TWP, his income will be $1,500.
  • POD rules: Andre’s monthly income will be $2,275 if he earns $1,500.

Andre should consider his TWP status and future earnings before enrolling in POD. Andre will benefit from the POD new rules if he expects to regularly earn more than $1,180 per month (or $14,040 in net profit per year).

  Current SSA rules
(in the TWP)
Current SSA rules
(TWP complete)
New POD rules
(always the same rules)
Average net monthly earnings


  •  $18,000
  • /12 months
  • = $1,500
  • $18,000
  • /12 months
  • =$1,500
  • $18,000 (net profit on last year's tax return)
  • /12 months
  • =$1,500
Monthly SSDI benefit (earnings adjusted) +$1,100 If Andre is still in his nine-month TWP, he will receive his full SSDI benefit amount this month. +$0 If Andre has completed his TWP, he will not receive his SSDI benefit this month because he earns more than the monthly non-blind Substantial Gainful Activity amount of $1,180. +$775 Andre earns more than the monthly POD threshold amount of $850. Under the new POD rules, his SSDI benefit will be reduced by $1 for every $2 he earns over $850.
    Earnings used to
    calculate POD offset=
  • $1,500
    (monthly earnings)
  • - $850
    (POD threshold)
  • = $650
    POD offset =
  • $650
    (POD offset earnings)
  • / 2
    ($1 for $2 offset)
  • =$325
    Monthly Benefit=
  • $1,100
    (full SSDI benefit)
  • - $325
    (POD offset)
  • = $775
Monthly income =$2,600 =$1,500 =$2,275