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Felony Record and Disability
March 8, 2008 6:13 PM   Subscribe

Does a felony conviction affect eligibility for Social Security disability?

Or should one spend 10K to an attorney to have the record expunged when otherwise, a criminal record isn't important to other areas of life?
posted by anonymous to Law & Government (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I think you may be vastly overestimating the cost of expungement.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:19 PM on March 8, 2008


The SSA's site says "Benefits generally are not paid for the months a person is confined for a crime", which implies that once you're out, you can have benefits.
posted by goatdog at 6:21 PM on March 8, 2008


But that might not be a correct assumption. Other sites say you can't get benefits if you've been convicted. You could probably go to a Social Security Office and ask one of the civil servants.
posted by goatdog at 6:26 PM on March 8, 2008



I think you may be vastly overestimating the cost of expungement.


Agreed.
posted by thivaia at 6:40 PM on March 8, 2008


Does a felony conviction affect eligibility for Social Security disability?

No. In fact, there's a whole procedure (that is never actually followed by SSA, but) to allow inmates to apply for SSI a few months before parole, so that their eligibility is determined on day one of parole.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 7:44 PM on March 8, 2008


Somewhat simplifying, there are four ways a felony conviction can have an impact on Social Security disability benefits:

You cannot get disability benefits while incarcerated for a felony;

You cannot get disability benefits while fleeing felony prosecution or a felony warrant or violating probation or parole;

You cannot get disability benefits if your disability arose or was aggravated while you were committing a felony;

You cannot get survivor's benefits if you made yourself a widow(er) or orphan by killing your spouse or parent(s).

(I am a lawyer and I am a board certified disability specialist, but I am not your lawyer. )
posted by pasici at 8:26 PM on March 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


Or should one spend 10K to an attorney to have the record expunged when otherwise, a criminal record isn't important to other areas of life?

Just want to give you some links w/r/t this so you can look into how the felony conviction impacts you.

After Prison: Roadblocks to Reentry
A report on state legal barriers facing people with criminal records


Relief From The Collateral Consequences Of A Criminal Conviction: A State-By-State Resource Guide

National H.I.R.E. Network Resources, Information & Assistance

$10,000 does not sound unreasonable.

I worked for a law firm where a partner represented someone pro bono and the hours involved were between 75-80. It involved court appearances by an associate, a great deal of research and suing a state agency to force the production of documents denied under a Freedom of Information Act request.
posted by mlis at 10:28 PM on March 8, 2008


Haha. I am a felon. For real. If I thought for one tiny, teeny, itsy, wee second that I could find some way to make $10,000 help me expunge (or even seal) my record, I would find a way to do it 10 times.

I am sure that you feel that the case in particular would be able to be expunged because of the type of crime or the time when it was committed, but I'd like to know how exactly you plan to go about it anyway. I was barely 18, a first time offender, and an eagle scout when I got busted. All I've done since then is make my community a better place, and there's no chance in HELL our prosecutor would quietly stand by and let my record get sealed.
posted by TomMelee at 10:30 AM on March 9, 2008


The felony involved forging prescriptions to have adequate pain management for my fibromyalgia, emphysema, bipolar disorder, etc. Pain management is a racket.

First time offender, I'm told to expect probation, a 51 year old writer, mother, struggling to make it without real pain medicine, unable to work, it's pretty hideous
posted by wordswinker at 11:40 PM on March 9, 2008


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