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How Does School Attendance Affect Your Disability Benefits?: Mitigating the Risks

Updated: Jan 8

This article explores the potential consequences of attending school while having a pending disability benefits claim. We'll delve into how the physical and cognitive abilities required for education can mistakenly indicate your capacity to work. Our experience highlights the risks involved, but remember that individual circumstances vary, and seeking professional advice is essential. Let's dive deeper into this topic.


The Perception of Capacity to Work:

When assessing disability benefits claims, authorities consider your ability to engage in gainful employment. Attending school, with its physical and cognitive demands, may inadvertently raise doubts about your limitations. Decision-makers might argue that if you handle education, you should be capable of working. Unfortunately, this perception can negatively impact your claim.


School Attendance as an Indicator:

Some judges fail to differentiate between attending school and being employed. They may see the physical and cognitive abilities displayed in education as evidence of your work capacity, leading to claim denials. Many claimants have experienced this unfortunate consequence.


The Connection between School Attendance and Disability Benefits:

Evaluators scrutinize your ability to work when you file for disability benefits. Attending school, whether physically or online, raises questions about your physical and cognitive abilities. Authorities may argue that if you can go to school, you can work, undermining your claim.


Physical Abilities and School Attendance:

Physical disabilities may not always hinder school attendance, especially with appropriate accommodations. However, this may create a perception that you can perform work-related tasks. Remember that school activities differ from typical job requirements, and individual limitations must be considered carefully.


Cognitive Abilities and School Attendance:

School involves cognitive tasks like reading, writing, problem-solving, and memory retention. Proficiency in these areas may raise doubts about your cognitive abilities and work capacity. It's crucial to differentiate between academic demands and employment requirements, which can vary significantly.


The Risk Involved:

Based on our experience, we advise caution when attending school during a pending disability benefits claim. Pursuing education is valuable, but it can influence the perception of your work capacity, potentially leading to claim denials, stress, and delays. Understanding the risks helps you make an informed decision.


Seeking Professional Advice:

Given the complexities of disability benefits and school attendance, consulting professionals well-versed in disability law and advocacy is crucial. They provide tailored guidance based on your circumstances, helping you navigate the system effectively. Working with experienced professionals ensures a better understanding of potential risks and exploration of alternative strategies to protect your claim.



Attending school while having a pending disability benefits claim carries risks for your eligibility. The physical and cognitive abilities displayed in education can be misconstrued as indicators of your work capacity, leading to claim denials. Our advice, based on experience, is to exercise caution and seek professional advice to understand the potential consequences in your specific situation. Making an informed decision safeguards your claim and ensures you receive the support you deserve.


©2023 Noel Anschutz / Professional Advocates, Inc.




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