Knowing what benefits you are eligible for is an important first step in lining them up to support you. In this article, we’ll explore who is eligible for Supplemental Security Income, SSI, and how you can go about applying and receiving it if you are eligible. Connecting with a local social security attorney can help you to explore your options and prepare your best case to support acceptance of your application the first time around.
Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, is a Federal Income supplement program that is funded through general tax revenues. It is worth noting that Social Security taxes do not fund SSI, so the requirements of having paid into the system – like with traditional Social Security benefits – are different. The Social Security Administration notes that SSI has been designed to provide cash to the recipients so that they can cover their essential basic needs, like food, clothing, and shelter.
The SSI system has been designed by the Social Security Administration to help persons who are aged, blind, or disabled and have little or no income through which to support their basic human needs. Monthly benefits are sent out to those who qualify and are approved. These monthly benefits are provided to persons with limited income and resources who have a qualifying disability, are blind, or are aged 65 or over. It is also important to note that blind or disabled children may also qualify for SSI.
In addition to being disabled, blind, or at least 65 years of age, to be eligible for SSI, you must also be either a U.S. citizen, national, or a qualified alien. You must reside in one of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands. Finally, you cannot be absent from the U.S. for a full calendar month or 30 or more consecutive days. So essentially, to qualify for SSI, you must have a qualifying disability or be over 65, and you must be a U.S. citizen or qualified alien who lives in the United States for at least 11 months or more each year.
Knowing how to navigate the at-times complex process of applying for benefits through the Social Security Administration can be difficult. Social Security disability benefits are determined differently than Supplemental Security Income, and the application processes are different between the two types of benefits. Knowing which applications to fill out, which information to provide in support of your application, and how to navigate any relevant appeals is challenging, especially when you have other pressing concerns regarding your health and financial situation.
Hiring a local attorney who is familiar with the process can make all the difference in your application, and can help your application be accepted on the first time, and can help you get your entitled benefits sooner than later. If you received a denial, a Social Security lawyer can help with your appeal.