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Can I Get Disability Benefits After a Drug Conviction?

Many people in Jackson, Kentucky, may be struggling under the weight of a drug addiction along with physical or mental limitations that are not their fault yet keep them from working. These people might wonder whether their record will keep them from getting Social Security Disability benefits.

The short answer to this question is "no," a felony drug conviction does not per se keep any otherwise disabled person from drawing disability benefits. In fact, it should not even have any consideration in whether a person is eligible for benefits.

However, there are some important nuances to this rule that Kentuckians need to be aware of. For one, a person who is in jail or prison will not receive disability benefits while they are incarcerated. The logic behind this rule is that the inmate is, in theory, already being provided for through the prison system.

Another consideration is that the Social Security Administration can determine that a person's disability is related to his or her alcoholism or drug addiction. If the Administration makes this determination, then the person will have an obligation to go to drug treatment and make a sincere effort within the course of that treatment.

While a drug conviction or, for that matter, any other felony conviction will, generally speaking, not affect one's eligibility for benefits, it may have some bearing on what terms and when a person will be able to receive a monthly check. Someone with detailed questions about how their criminal drug history may affect them should speak with an experienced Social Security disability attorney.

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