SSI qualifications

Although the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is a government program administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA), SSI qualification has a lot to do with your legal counsel. 

Find out more about this government benefit, who is eligible and why legal advice from Mississippi Social Security Attorney is essential.

What is SSI?

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a government program in the United States that provides extra income to the elderly and disabled. This program gives monthly cash payouts to members to assist them in satisfying basic necessities. SSI is not like a regular Social Security pension.

What are the SSI eligibility requirements?

SSI qualifications

To be approved for this benefit program, you must complete all of the requirements listed:

  • Be disabled, blind, or above the age of 65.
  • Have a limited income and resources.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or a legally allowed immigrant who meets further qualifications.
  • Except for children of military parents stationed permanently overseas or certain students studying abroad, you must reside in one of the fifty states, the District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands.

Other things that may impact your eligibility include

  • Marital status
  • Income and resources of specific members of your family, such as a spouse or a parent of a minor child.

How Do I Apply for (SSI) Supplemental Security Income?

If you are an adult with a handicap, you can only apply for SSI online. SSI applications for disabled children under the age of 18 or non-disabled seniors aged 65 and up are not available online.

What is the SSI Limit?

The Federal Benefit Rate (FBR) specifies the maximum monthly SSI payout and the maximum SSI income restriction. The FBR now sets individual payments at $841 and couples at $1,261. 

The FBR will rise somewhat each year in line with the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment. An “essential person” receives $421 per month as payment for the primary care of the person receiving monetary assistance. 

A person’s or couple’s combined income cannot exceed the monthly SSI payment set by the FBR. However, the Social Security Administration only considers a person’s income in parts. 

For example, only half of their monthly earnings exceeding $65 will be considered if a person works. Thus, it’s critical to contact the SSA about one’s precise income and eligibility.

How do SSDI and SSI differ?

The main distinction is that SSI is determined based on age/disability and limited income and resources, while SSDI is determined based on disability and work credits.

Furthermore, in most states, SSI recipients are immediately eligible for Medicaid health care coverage. After 24 months of collecting disability benefits, a person with SSDI will be automatically qualified for Medicare (individuals with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis [ALS] are eligible for Medicare immediately).

SSI versus SSDI

Eligibility is determined by Age (65 and above) OR loss of vision (any age) OR a handicap (of any age) AND a little or no income and resources Disability AND a sufficient number of work credits earned via personal or family employment
When will the benefits start? 1st full month after the day the claim was submitted, or, if later, the date SSI eligibility was determined Sixth complete month of disability; the six-month period starts with the first full month after the day the SSA determines the disability started.
Benefit on average (monthly) 577 dollars (as of Nov. 2020) 1100 dollars (as of Nov. 2020)
Maximum benefit (monthly) In 2021, a single person will pay $794 while a married couple will pay $1,191. (based on income) In 2021, the total amount will be $3,148. (based on work history)
Insurance for medical expenses When receiving SSI, a person is automatically eligible for Medicaid (in most states) After a 24-month waiting period from the start of benefits, you are automatically eligible for Medicare (no waiting TIME for persons with ALS)

Can I obtain SSI and SSDI?

Yes, if you have both restricted income/resources and job history, you may be eligible for both benefits.

How long does it take to collect money from SSI after you’ve been approved?

Back pay and your first monthly payment should arrive 30-90 days after receiving your award letter. In terms of insurance, if you were accepted for SSI, you would get it. If you are eligible for SSI, you will immediately get Medicaid benefits based on your residence.

Is it essential to hire a lawyer to apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI)?

A lawyer can help you acquire medical documents and other proof to support your SSDI or SSI claim. In addition, they may accompany you to appointments with Social Security authorities. The SSA will work directly with your attorney and provide them access to your Social Security file information.

This is particularly true if you submit an appeal after being denied by Social Security.

To prepare for a hearing before an administrative law court, your lawyer may challenge experts Social Security calls on to testify.


  • Without Social Security’s consent, your lawyer may charge you for out-of-pocket expenditures like a medical report.
  • If your claim is dismissed and there is no back pay, your attorney may file a fee petition to collect, but they cannot manage if they signed a contingency fee contract.


The bottom line with SSI qualifications is that ….

It is designed to help support people who are disabled due to major medical issues. If you fall into this category, it can come as a tremendous financial relief in helping you receive the assistance you deserve and need. The sooner that you seek professional assistance, the quicker you can get away from the burdens of extra medical expenses on top of all your present problems.

If you are trying to find an attorney that has been in the SSI field for many years, contact the Rollins Law Firm. It’s time for you to be able to have the money that you deserve. Meet with a Rollins Law Firm attorney for a free consultation.

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