You probably know someone who receives benefits from the government. After all, nearly 52 million people in the United States get some form of means-tested government assistance every month. One of these programs is called Supplemental Security Income, which may be unfamiliar to you. Let’s look at some surprising facts about Supplemental Security Income.
#1. Over 8 Million People Receive Supplemental Security Income Each Month
Most of the funds they receive come from the federal government. However, some states provide additional money:
California, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Iowa, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
People of all ages, including children, may be eligible to receive Supplemental Security Income benefits.
#2. The Social Security Administration Manages SSI.
The federal government consists of many departments and agencies, each with their own jobs to do.
Most people think of retirement benefits when they hear “Social Security.” However, Supplemental Security Income, also known as SSI, is one of several programs managed by the Social Security Administration (“Social Security”). You may have heard of the other main program: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). People who are unable to work because of a disability may qualify for SSDI.
#3. Supplemental Security Income Is Not the Same as SSDI.
There are some similarities between SSI and SSDI:
- Both managed by Social Security
- Both are available to people with disabilities
But eligibility for the programs is very different. However, the next point is important.
#4. You Can Get SSDI at the Same Time.
Despite the similarities between SSI and SSDI, it is possible to qualify for both programs. In fact, many people who get SSDI also receive SSI to supplement their benefits.
When you apply for one program, talk to your disability attorney about eligibility for the other program as well.
#5. Work History Does Not Matter.
Here’s another difference between SSI and SSDI. Social Security has certain work history requirements in place for SSDI applicants. Most Supplemental Security Income applicants don’t have to worry about how much they have worked in the past.
However, you do have to meet certain income and resource limits. For example, you cannot have countable resources totaling more than $2,000 to get SSI benefits. Income limits also apply. These requirements are set in place because SSI is a needs-based program.
#6. Not All Income and Resources Count Against You.
Social Security staff will look at your income and resources when processing your application. However, some things usually are exempted:
- The house you live in
- One vehicle, if you or someone in your household uses it
- Household goods
The list is too long to include here. Also, not all of your income will be counted. But your disability lawyer can help you learn more about Supplemental Security Income.
#7. Most SSI Recipients Qualify for Medicaid.
If you pass the test to get SSI benefits, you may also be able to get other benefits. In California, most people receiving Supplemental Security Income automatically receive Medi-Cal – the Medicaid program in California. Although Medicaid is funded mainly by the federal government, state agencies manage the program and have some flexibility in management.
To Learn More About Supplemental Security Income, Ask a Disability Lawyer
Social Security Administration rules and regulations are not easy to understand. It can help to have someone on your side. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have more than 50 years’ experience assisting clients like you. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we represent clients throughout Southern California.