Self-employment has its benefits and its risks.
You work for yourself.
Technically, you work for others.
You are a contract worker.
According to a recent Kiplinger article titled “If You're a Gig Worker, Here's How You Can Still Get Disability Protection,” contract workers have their own set of concerns.
Lack of employer benefits.
What happens if you get injured on the job?
So much for Worker's Compensation.
Nevertheless, you still have a bit of a safety net.
What is it?
The Social Security Disability Insurance program.
This is designed to help gig workers and part-time employees.
What does it do?
It provides some replacement income from the Social Security Administration.
How do you get it?
You do not need to buy it or sign up for it.
Do you pay self-employment taxes or FICA?
If yes, you are already paying into coverage.
To qualify, you need to have paid into the system for at least five of the past ten years.
If you earn at least $1,360 per quarter in 2019, you will get credit toward your disability insurance.
If you have a sever disability and cannot work for 12 months or longer, you could have access to other benefits through SSDI.
What other benefits?
These could include dependent benefits, early Medicare, and return to work support.
How long will your SSDI benefits continue?
They should continue until you reach retirement age or can return to work.
Would this damage your retirement benefit income?
It has the added advantage of protecting future retirement benefit income.
As a contractor, you can help many people.
Although the government can help provide some protections, it may be wise to seek the help of an experienced financial advisor.
Reference: Kiplinger (December 11, 2018) “If You're a Gig Worker, Here's How You Can Still Get Disability Protection”