Social Security Disability &
  Special Needs Planning News from
 Sheri R. Abrams, Attorney at Law,
 "Of Counsel" at Needham Mitnick & Pollack
Picture of Sheri Abrams
In This Issue
Social Security Not Making Many Changes in their Numbers in 2011
Say Goodbye To Paper Social Security Checks
Sheri Abrams To Speak At the 2011 Accessibility Summit
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Issue: # 30January 2011
Picture of Social Security Card and Dice


Welcome to the thirtieth edition of our newsletter.

These monthly newsletters are designed to show you how not to gamble with your or your patients/clients Social Security Disability and/or SSI benefits.  We also provide you with information on Special Needs Planning.

You may have been added to our e-mail newsletter mailing list if you have been in contact with Sheri R. Abrams, Attorney at Law or the Law Firm of Needham Mitnick & Pollack PLC.

You may unsubscribe by clicking on the link at the end of this e-mail.

Social Security Not Making Many Changes in their Numbers in 2011


Social Security Logo

The Social Security Administration has announced the amounts they will use in 2011 to calculate various programs and eligibility, and the amount paid to SSI beneficiaries.


As you can see below, there have been no changes from the 2010 amounts except for an increase in the Medicare Part B premiums.


The Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) amount for individuals with disabilities, other than blindness, is $1,000 for 2011. The amount is unchanged from 2010.


The SGA amount for individuals who are blind is $1,640 for 2011. The amount is unchanged from 2010.


The monthly earnings amount that we use to determine if a month counts for the Trial Work Period (TWP) is $720 for 2011. The amount is unchanged from 2010.


For 2011, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Federal Benefit Rates (FBR) are $674 for an eligible individual and $1,011 for an eligible couple. The amounts are unchanged from 2010.


For 2011, the monthly Medicare Part B premium increases to $114.50.


Say Goodbye To Paper Social Security Checks


Social Security CheckMillions of Americans will no longer be able to get their Social Security retirement and disability checks by mail, under a new timetable.


Those already receiving Social Security will have until March 1, 2013, to make the switch to direct deposit or a debit card. New recipients of Social Security benefits will have to accept paperless payment sooner - as of May 1, 2011.


The government has decided, however, to allow people who are 90 and over and still getting Social Security benefit checks, to continue to receive their paper checks. The government estimates there are 275,000 people who fall into this category.


For people who do not have a bank account, Social Security has an option that allows them to use a Direct Express debit MasterCard.  More than 1.5 million people have obtained these cards since they were first issued in 2008.


In addition to the automatic waiver from electronic payments for those 90 and over, people living in remote areas who might have trouble getting to a bank can also petition for a waiver from the new rules.  Social Security expects fewer than 1 percent of current benefit recipients will petition for a waiver.


Social Security Commissioner Michael J. Astrue said that people should not wait until the deadlines to make the switch to electronic payments. "Switching now eliminates the risks of lost and stolen checks and provides immediate access to your money on payment day," Astrue said.


To help with the switchover for those still getting paper checks, the government has created a website,


and a toll-free phone number, 1-800-333-1795, that people can call for assistance.
Sheri Abrams To Speak At the 2011 Accessibility Summit-----A National Conference For The Disability Community

April 1-2, 2011, McLean Bible Church, Vienna Virginia


Accessibility Summit Logo

The Accessibility Summit is celebrating its 11th year, as a national conference designed to offer a broad range of information and resources to individuals, families and caregivers, faith-based organizations, educators, and other professionals impacted by disability.


Dr. Temple Grandin is the Accessibility Summit's keynote speaker.  Dr. Grandin is one of the world's most well-known individuals with autism.  Her fascinating life, with all of its challenges and successes, was recently documented in an HBO film entitled, "Temple Grandin".


The Accessibility Summit's schedule is also packed with 30 informative workshops and panel discussions led by experts and featuring a wide range of disability-related topics.


Attorney Sheri Abrams will be speaking on Saturday, April 2nd at 1:30 pm as part of the panel discussion entitled: 


Taking Care of Business--

Legally & Financially--

for Your Child with Special Needs.


For more information or to register for the 2011 Accessibility Summit please click on:


Sheri Abrams' Book "Don't Gamble With Your Social Security Disability Benefits--What Every Virginia Resident Needs To Know To Win A Social Security Disability Case" Is Available.
Picture of Book 
For more information please click here to see our Press Release.
You can also download a free copy of the book at our websites:



The law firm of Needham Mitnick & Pollack, PLC, is located at:
NMP's Office Building 
400 S. Maple Avenue
Suite 210
Falls Church, VA 22046
(703) 536-7778
This is in downtown Falls Church and the office has plenty of free and accessible parking.

Needham Mitnick & Pollack, PLCIf you know of someone who could use my legal services or any of the other members of the law firm of Needham Mitnick & Pollack, PLC please forward to him/her this e-mail newsletter or give him/her our telephone number: (703) 536-7778.

We provide legal services in the areas of Social Security Disability Law , Elder Law, Wills and Trusts, Probate, Trust Administration, Powers of Attorney, Advance Medical Directives, Guardianships, Long Term Care Planning, Disability Planning, Medicaid Eligibility, Veterans Benefits and Special Needs Trusts.
If you, or someone you know, is involved with an educational event or support group that would benefit from a presentation on any of the areas of law for which we provide legal services, please call us at (703) 536-7778.