1. Social Security Disability
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  3. Glossary
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  5. Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Supplemental Security Income is an acronym for Supplemental Security Income. SSI, in contrast to Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), is based on financial necessity. To qualify for aid, you must meet stringent income and resource requirements. Along with completing the income and resource requirements, you must be 65 years of age or older, blind, or crippled. To qualify for SSI benefits, you must be a United States citizen or national and reside in the United States or the Northern Mariana Islands. Certain circumstances may qualify a noncitizen for Social Security disability benefits under SSI. Your monthly Social Security disability payout is calculated based on your assets and income. If you are eligible for SSI, you are also automatically eligible for immediate Medicare benefits. While SSI benefits are uniform throughout the country, several states supplement the standard amount.

What is considered income?

Wages, pensions, food, and shelter are all considered income by the Social Security Administration (SSA). State income restrictions differ. While you can receive benefits from both SSDI and SSI concurrently, SSDI benefits will count against your income limits. Certain amounts of your income are not included, including the first $20 you make each month, the first $65 you earn, and half of the amount you earn beyond $65. Food stamps and shelter provided by a charity organization are not included. Additionally, home energy aid is not often considered income. When determining your eligibility for Social Security disability payments, the SSA will consider a portion of your spouse’s income and assets. If you are not a citizen, your spouse’s whole income and assets are deducted from your income limit. If you are under the age of 18, a portion of your parents’ income and assets are deducted from your income limit. Certain wages and scholarships obtained by a student are not included in his or her income.

What is considered a Resource?

Resources are broadly defined as anything you own, including real estate, cash in the bank, and securities. To be eligible for Social Security disability benefits under SSI, you must have no more than $2,000 in assets if you are single, or $3,000 if you are married.

However, Social Security excludes certain types of property from your resource limit, including your primary residence and the real estate on which it sits, life insurance policies with a face value of less than $1,500, your car, burial plots for you and your immediate family, and burial funds of up to $1,500.

There are more eligibility requirements and exceptions for Social Security disability benefits, but the ones covered below are the most prevalent.

Blind or disabled SSI beneficiaries may be able to work while receiving SSI benefits. SSI payments are reduced based on your income, but you may be able to maintain Medicaid coverage. Additionally, money can be saved for a career or educational ambition. Funds set aside for certain uses are not deducted from your income or resource limits. Additionally, blind and disabled individuals are eligible for free special services such as job counseling, job training, and employment help. Additional exclusions for disabled individuals include assistive or adaptive devices that aid you in your employment, such as a wheelchair, and a portion of the income you use for job training or to purchase work-related items. The salaries of a blind individual engaged in labor, as well as related expenses like as transportation, are not included.