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What is SSI, and how does it relate to SSDI?

Our Mississippi readers have all heard a bit about Social Security disability and what it offers to those with serious impairments which prevent them from working. Readers may not know very much about Supplemental Security Income, though, which is another Social Security program also for the benefit of those with disabilities.

Generally, SSI is for those who are age 65 or older or who are blind or disabled.of the big differences between Social Security disability and Supplemental Security Income is that whereas the former is funded by those who pay into the program directly, Supplemental Security Income is funded by general tax revenues. SSI, as it is called, is a need-based program targeted at those with low income and little financial reserves. SSI eligibility is based on the applicant’s age and disability.  

In order to be eligible for SSI, an applicant may not have an income that exceeds the monthly benefit. As of this January, the maximum monthly Federal benefits become $721 per individual and $1,082 per couple. Not all one’s assets are counted against this number, though. The monthly amount an applicant receives depends on income, living arrangements and other factors.

Not everybody who puts in an application for SSI will immediately be approved for benefits, and it is important for applicants to know that they have a right to appeal an initial decision. Appeals must be filed within 60 days of the initial application. It can help greatly to work with an experienced attorney in going through the appeals process. Doing so helps to ensure the best possible result in one’s case. 

Source: The Green Sheet Farm Forum, “Supplemental Security Income explained,” Howard L. Kossover, May 23, 2014.Mississippi Bar, “Supplemental Security Income,” Accessed May 27, 2014. 

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