How does the Social Security Administration decide how much SSI to pay me when I get an SSI approval? |
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How does the Social Security Administration decide how much SSI to pay me when I get an SSI approval?

By   /  February 4, 2013  /  343 Comments

Learn how SSI benefits are calculated after an SSI approval and what kinds of income are countable when determining your SSI payment amount.

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When SSI Benefits Start

After an SSI approval, benefits will be paid for the first full calendar month after you apply or after you become eligible for SSI, whichever is later.

The SSI Payment Formula

The Social Security Administration, known as SSA, figures your federal SSI benefit by deducting your countable unearned income and your countable earned income from the maximum Federal Benefit Amount of $733 for individuals and $1,100 for a couple. The remainder is your Federal Amount Payable. Some examples will follow later in this article.

State Supplements

Some states pay a supplementary benefit to individuals who qualify for SSI or do not qualify only because of income or resources that are above the federal limits but below the state’s limits. Some states administer their own supplements and require application or contact with the state. Other states turn the administration of their state supplement over to the Social Security Administration. If your state has a supplement that you could qualify for and the state handles its own administration, your Social Security office will direct you to the appropriate agency to make application. For a list of states with state supplements, see “Index of States That Supplement Payment When You Apply for SSI Benefits.”

When Income is Counted for SSI

After you get an SSI approval, your ongoing financial eligibility for SSI is decided on a month-by-month basis. This means you can be eligible in one month, not in the next, and then eligible again in the following month.

During your first three months of eligibility, your SSI benefit is calculated, non-recurring income is counted only in the month that it is received. After that, unless eligibility is interrupted, your payment will be based on income you received two months before. For example, if you became eligible in March 2015, beginning in June (the fourth month of eligibility), your income two months before, April’s income, would determine June’s payment; May’s income would determine your July payment, and so on. From this example, we can see how important it is to report changes by the tenth of the month after the change. Reporting on time minimizes underpayments and overpayments, which you might have to repay.

If eligibility is interrupted, the first three months that you are again eligible are treated like a new claim for purposes of calculation. This calculation convention is also used when an adult SSI recipient has a change in marital status or the parents of a child receiving SSI have a change in marital status and when the SSI-eligible child leaves a parent’s home.

For a discussion of which types of income are countable and which are not, please see our articles “I Want to Work. Can You Tell Me How to Get SSI While Working?” and “When I Complete My SSI Application Form, It Asks Me to Declare My Income. Does All My Income Affect My SSI?

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  • Published: 3 years ago on February 4, 2013
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  • Last Modified: February 25, 2015 @ 1:01 pm
  • Filed Under: SSI

343 Comments

  1. kcmrns says:

    I was just recently approved for SSI. IM living in a house that I own outright and live with my adult daughter. She is not working at this time however is going for a job that pays 13.00 o’er hour 40 hrs. A week. We will be splitting all the bills down the middle. Will this affect my SSI IN ANY WAY. I LIVE IN PA. SNY HELP IS GREATLY APPRECIATED.THANKS

  2. Ben says:

    Got a letter saying my ssi amount would decrease because of countable income…. My only income is SSI….

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ben,

      If you are married and living with your spouse, part of the spouse’s income may count as yours. You can learn more about deemed income in the article “What Are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect SSI Payment Amounts and Qualifying for SSI Disability?” under the “SSI” tab on the navigation bar of this website.

      If you are not married and no one is subsidizing your shelter or food costs, then a mistake may have been made. If that is the case, I suggest that you go to your local office to find out what income is being counted. Then, if you disagree, you can appeal.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  3. Dominic says:

    Hello can the IRS put a levy on your SSI benefits?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is not subject to a tax lev, perhaps because the maximum SSI payment is less than the amount of Social Security benefits protected from a tax levy ($750) or perhaps because SSI is a public welfare payment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  4. Dominic says:

    Hello. I was reading through some replies and I saw you mention that the Representative payee has to pay the rent/housing directly to the landlord in the form of a check or money order.

    My questions are does it always have to be those payment methods or can the landlord be paid in cash and you get a receipt? And what if your payee is also your landlord? would that be conflict of interest? or its ok

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      It would be best not to pay cash so that the payee has proof of payment. Online bill pay or any other type of payment that creates a record is fine. If the payee is the landlord, a check or other payment method should be used that creates a record of the money being transferred from the disabled beneficiary’s account to the payee/landlord.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  5. Dominic says:

    How does SSA determine that what you are paying for room rental is fair market value? Do they just take your word for it or they investigate what the going rental rates are in your area or

    Also what do you need to bring with you to SSA when you report that you have started paying rent?

    And how soon after will you find out if an increase has been granted or denied. Does the decision come in a letter.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      Social Security may already have an idea of fair market value (FMV) for different types of housing in your area. If you do your research from rental ads in your area and pay in the FMV range you are seeing, Social Security will probably determine you are paying FMV without further research.

      You and the person you are renting from need to write up statements of the amount you pay for a room or apartment or house and the date you began to pay rent. How soon you get a determination will depend on the procedures in the office and the complexity of any other financial issues. You might be told at the interview or it could be a couple weeks or more.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  6. Dominic says:

    Ssi benefits are received the first of each month right but what if you are getting it by check? Is it mailed out on the 1st? or mailed before so that it arrives on the 1st?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      If the payment is a regular monthly benefit, it will be mailed so that the post office has it to deliver on the first of the month, unless it is a weekend in which case it is delivered on the Friday before the first.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  7. Dominic says:

    Hello do you have to file income tax once you start receiving ssi benefits?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      I cannot say whether you have to file a tax return–that would be a question to direct to the IRS. I can tell you that Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a public welfare program and, as such, SSI payments are not taxable. If you are receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI), part of the benefits may be taxable, depending on your total income.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  8. Dominic says:

    Thanks so much for your advice before. I just came from my financial update interview. I have another question about Fair Market Value. I have seen you touch on it but I don’t fully understand it.

    I got approved and was told I would be getting 425 a month. I am and have been staying with a friend rent free but the friend is living paycheck to paycheck so I will start contributing to the utilities and pay for my room.

    So the question is roughly how much will I have to pay dollar amount monthly in rent + utilities, association fee for SSA to increase my benefit to the 733?

    I checked the going rate for a room in the area and its $400-450 average but that would be all of my check so should I just pay that $400 and take a letter and receipt to SSA and be granted the increase or if my friend agrees to a lesser amount would SSA consider that still inkind support since its less than the average thus will not increase my benefit.

    Thanks in advance

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dominic,

      Typically, to get the full increase to $733 a month, you would need to pay rent in the fair market value range, which you have identified as $400 to $500. This means paying $400 and presumably buying your food with SNAP benefits. Your SSI will increase two months after you start paying rent because income changes take effect two months later. If you pay only $300, your benefit would increase to only $653. When you report the change, take a statement from your friend saying that you are renting a room and paying for your own food.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  9. Christine says:

    Hello, I have a five year old autistic son and he has been receiving ssi check for about 3-4 months now. The amount is 488 and when many people tell me that amount is too little, that he should be recieveing way more than this. We live in public housing with my mother and I don’t pay rent and I just go to college. I don’t work either. How can I ensure that my son is getting the proper amount. The father is not in the picture.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Christine,

      Your son can start to pay his share (one-third) of the amount of rent your mother is responsible for, one-third of the power, heat, water/sewer and garbage, if they are not included in the rent, and one-third of the cash spent on food (unless you and he have a food stamp grant separate from your mother’s). If he starts to do this, you can report it to the Social Security Administration and his Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will be increased two months later, likely to $733 a month.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Christine says:

        I took the letter with the amount my son gets to the housing office and they said the changes to the rent will become effective next year. Should I wait till then to call Social Security or should I call now?
        And also my son is under my mothers food stamps, is that something I should also bring up to ssi?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Christine,

          Changes in living arrangements for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are supposed to be reported no later than the 10th of the month after they occur so you need to report the change now. Yes, you do need to say that your son is on the food stamp grant with your mother.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  10. Sandy says:

    I have a brother who is disabled and has been collecting a check. He has nothing. He has been living with my mom who recently passed away. She owed her home and we may have to sell to pay back taxes. Will this affect his check? Also I am looking to find out if medicaid covers independent living or if his disability check would be higher if he has to move to an apartment.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sandy,

      If your brother is receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI), his living arrangements do not affect his benefit amount; neither does an inheritance.

      If your brother is receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI), his change in living arrangements, that is, now living alone in the house, may affect his benefits. He needs to report the change to living alone right away. If the house is sold and he receives some of the proceeds of the sale, that money will be income to him in the month he receives it. Any amount carried forward to the following month will count toward the $2,000 resource limit. He likely will be overpaid the month he receives the inheritance and must report when it is received. If he is ineligible in following months because of carried-over money, he can use the money to live on until his assets drop to $2,000 or less. At that time, he can request that his SSI be reinstated. He should keep a record of how the inheritance was spent down. (Note that if he gives the money away, he could remain ineligible for a number of months after gifting it.)

      Medicaid in some states will covers assisted living facilities and I believe a few states are now providing some in-home care in lieu of a residential facility. I suggest that you contact your state’s Medicaid office to find out what options may be available.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • Katrina chambers says:

      I got approved Aug 10 2015 been applying since Feb 2011 when will I get my first payment

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Katrina,

        Given how long it took you to get approved, I assume your approval was at a hearing appeal. It can take sixty days after you receive the judge’s approval letter for benefits to start.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

    • anon says:

      hi kay, im thinking of applying for ssi. i live with my girlfriend and i have no income so she has been supporting me (small town, no car, crushing poverty etc.) i am on her welfare caseload and on her hud voucher. our only source of income is the $500 ish from tanf she gets for herself and the 3 children who are not related to me. im wondering if i could claim them as dependants and if her tanf and me being on her stamps will cut into my ssi if im approved. any loopholes that will help me get more would be great

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Anon,

        In that you are not related to the children and do not support them, I do not think that there are any situations in which you can claim the children as dependents. If you are medically approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), your girlfriend’s and her children’s income and the food stamps will not affect your SSI benefits. The fact that she is providing you with free housing (she pays the utilities and whatever portion of the rent that HUD doesn’t cover) will cause a reduction in your SSI. If, after you are approved, you start to pay your share, your SSI could be increased. If you are on your girlfriend’s food-stamp grant, your SSI income could result in a reduction in the food stamps.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  11. Rebbie says:

    I have a question regarding how income is calculated for SSI. I applied for benefits on 8/15/13 alleging disability beginning 6/21/13 (the last day I worked). The ALJ agreed and made a fully favorable decision. I filed for both SSI and SSDI. From 6/13 to 8/14, I lived with a roommate. He paid the rent and utilities; however, I was responsible for cleaning the house, making his meals, washing his clothes, etc. as my contribution toward expenses. I also received food stamps during those months because they said his income did not count as I prepared my meals separately. I began receiving LTD benefits in 11/14 retroactive to 9/13 (there was a 3 month waiting period from my last day of work). I know that my LTD benefit is too high for me to receive SSI benefits for 11/14 forward. However, I am not sure how my living situation with my former roommate will affect calculations. His income was around $30,000 a year but because we really were roommates and not boyfriend/girlfriend, I do not know the exact numbers.

    I expect SSA to contact me soon to complete the financial eligibility for SSI. I am not sure if my SSI benefit for 9/13 and 10/13 will be reduced due to living with my roommate. The food stamp program asked if I paid rent and I explained that I had to perform chores as my share of the rent/utilities. My roommate submitted a written statement to the food stamp office explaining that we purchased and prepared meals separately but it did not say anything about my chores (they did not say they needed that information in writing). It was just something that was asked during a phone interview.

    How does SSA handle this situation? Will I have to get some sort of statement from my former roommate? I am concerned because I have no way to contact him now to get that information (I moved to another city). It was not a friendly parting so I do not expect him to be amenable to providing verification even if contacted directly by SSA.

    • Rebbie says:

      Sorry, that was a typo. I began receiving LTD in 11/13 retroactive to 9/13. I apologize for the typo.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Rebbie,

        Please see my reply to your prior post. The LTD for September through November will count for SSI in the month it was received, November 2013.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rebbie,

      Your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for September and October 2014 will be reduced to $489 a month because you received free housing. You cannot prove that the housing was payment for work.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  12. Jeff says:

    Kay,

    Our 10 year old son has autism and we were told he qualified medically for SSI back in March of 2015. We waited patiently and never heard back from anyone. I called and left a message for his case worker to call us back. She never did so. I called back and talked to a supervisor in June and he said said our son’s file would be looked at. My wife talked to the worker and she advised my wife to go open a bank account for his direct deposit. She couldnt do so because we still had not recieved any letters from the SSA. We finally received a small check for back pay for the month of November. We then recieved a letter two days later saying the the check was for backpay for November and that his July benefit would be $0. We called back and we were told that basically we had two many resources (cars) and that why he would not recive anything. I called back last week and asked an agent to tell me what the deeming amount for parents’ are and she said ot should have been on the awards letter we received. I explained to her that the only letter we received was the one about his small backpay check. She began looking at his file and was very confused as to why he wasnt getting anything. She told me that she would refer it to the same supervisor as before and then call me back. I still have not heard anything from them. What should our next action be?

    Thanks,

    Jeff

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jeff,

      I suggest that you research the value of the two cars. If you owe any money on the cars, the value is the amount they are worth less what you owe on them. Then submit a copy of your research to the Social Security office. You and your wife can have $3,000 countable resources; any excess counts toward your son’s $2,000 limit. The more valuable car will be excluded as necessary for transportation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  13. Marcus says:

    Hi Kay,
    I was recently on SSI for 10 years and 8 months ago cut-off. I retained an attorney & they submitted paper work for reconsideration. I received a letter say they found i was still disabled. How long before i will receive payment and if back pay is owed how soon for that ? (i chose not to collect while i waited, because my att. advised me not to) I live in NYS

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marcus,

      If you were receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you will likely have to have an interview appointment to update your finances during the period of time your appeal was pending. After that it can take a little over a week to a month or more for payments to start. If you were receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI), it could take the payment center a couple months to reinstate benefits. Your attorney will be paid by Social Security from part of your back pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  14. james says:

    hey I want to say I got approved for ssdi and ssi but I have not seen award letter yet but ssd told me on the phone that they close it and I was approved how long well it take to get award letter then a women at ssd told me since I live with my mom I have to use her for my income for ssi is that true I need help thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear James,

      If you are age eighteen or older, your mother’s income does not affect the amount of your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. However, if your mother is providing you with free shelter or free food and shelter, your SSI will be reduced because of the in-kind (non-cash) support you are getting from your mother. Once your benefits start, if you start to pay your share of shelter and food or market rate rent and buy your own food, your SSI could be increased.

      SSI monthly benefits will start first, followed by part or all of the SSI back pay a month or two after the medical approval. Social Security Disability (SSDI) typically starts one to two months after the SSI has been calculated. SSDI back pay will be reduced by SSI back benefits paid for any months you were eligible for both benefits and will be paid one to two months after the SSI starts.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  15. Meg says:

    My 21 yr old sister was recently approved for SSI (Disabled Adult Child) and we’re expecting a fairly large retroactive payment. My understanding is that we do not need a dedicated account since she’s over 18 but it’s unclear what restrictions there are on how her representative payee can spend the money. Are we restricted to spending it on things directly related to her disability (medical costs etc)? Can some of the retroactive payment be used to reimburse me for expenses I covered while we were waiting for approval (my sisters new clothes, a new bed etc.)?

    • Meg says:

      Sorry, I meant back payments, not retroactive

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Meg,

      Disabled Adult Child benefits are Social Security benefits paid on a parent’s earnings record. SSI is Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which is paid to disabled children and disabled adults. Whichever, you sister is getting, it can be used for any kind of current or future needs she has including, shelter, food, clothing, household and personal items, medical and dental care, transportation, and entertainment. Paying debts is last on the list unless it is a medical debt that needs to be paid to continue to get medical care; and ideally, some of the back funds would be kept as a contingency for currently unknown future needs.

      If you and your sister had an agreement at the time the purchases were made that she would repay you for your purchases, then I suggest that you tell Social Security about the loan agreement and get permission to use some of your sister’s money that way. That will protect you against charges of misusing your sister’s benefits.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  16. Niki says:

    Dear kay, my husband received a call july 17 saying ssa needed verification of my income for may and june. I faxed it over and called his worker to verify the fax. He said everthing looked good and my husband should receive first chk by mail for july at the end of the month. And aug. Pay on aug 1st. We have not received an award letter. Has he been approved.? His app was completed on may 13. Will he get bak pay for those mnths? We also have two dependents under 9 will they get an allotment also?

    • Niki says:

      He applied for Ssi. My question is. How can he promise payouts if he hasnt received an awards letter yet? PLease HELP!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Niki,

      Payment is usually issued before the award letter goes out. The computer input to pay triggers the letter. If he was financially eligible each month, I would expect his benefits to begin in June. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is paid on the first of the month and your income is being considered in determining his eligibility, so I assume that your husband was approved for SSI. SSI does not pay dependent benefits for children.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  17. layni avalos says:

    I am thinking about relocating to hemet ca how much is the ssi puts there i currently receive 733

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Layni,

      The federal SSI payment is the same in California. In addition, California pays an SSI state supplement. The exact amount you will receive will depend on your living arrangements. If you live independently (not in a care situation) and pay all your own shelter and food expenses, your federal amount will stay the same and the state supplement will pay an additional $154.60.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  18. Sonya Williams says:

    Hello my son has ADHD, autism and speech delay he was just approved after a very long wait. I am looking over how they came up with his amount from what I can tell they deductEd 20.00 and 1/3 of his child support. Is it correct it should have been the first 20.00 then 65.00 and then 1/3 of his child support? I live in the MD from what I can find online he might be able to get state administered supplement is this correct? If yes how do I go about applying for this assistance

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sonya,

      All but $20 of the child support would be countable income. The exclusion of $65 and one-half of the amount above $65 applies to work earnings. If you think that an error has been made in the calculation, try to get it corrected informally by talking to a representative. If you are unsuccessful and still think there is an error, file an Request for Reconsideration.

      To apply for state-administered SSI state supplement, either try to find an online directory of state services or ask the local Social Security office to identify which state office in your area handles the SSI state supplement applications.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Donna says:

        Hello Kay,
        I’ve read over this site and cannot seem to find my issue addressed. I’m hoping you or your readers could give me some guidance. After my (now 22 year old) son’s failed attempt at college, a disability advocacy group suggested he apply for SSI as a means to expedite a job coach/facilitated employment. He had a small mutual fund ($250), some savings bonds and a small bank account which they explained needed to be below $2000 to qualify for SSI. We applied in Oct 2012 when his assets were below the threshold. My son has no comprehension of money so the SSA Rep recommended I be his “Rep Payee.” I had no idea what that meant, so she explained that I’d have to open a special account for him in my name and gave me the special language (so the bank would know what kind of account), that I had to have his checks direct deposited, and to keep track of receipts and expenses because I’d have to complete a report on how the money was used. I thought I understood. After a few months, he received a large retro check which I was told we had to spend within 9 months. To make a long story short, in that same time period, I was transferred 150 miles away and life got extremely hectic– training in a new job, traveling back and forth, selling then buying a home, some unexpected health issues, a burglary, and so many other things. All the while, the Rep Payee Account balance was increasing because I didn’t deduct my son’s rent payments timely and I was giving him money from my personal account and paid all his expenses using my money or credit card due to being out of town and for the convenience. My intention was always that I’d eventually sort his expenses out and reimburse myself. I became overwhelmed trying to keep all the balls in the air and did not realize that the growing balance in the Rep Payee Account was counted as HIS assets. To my horror, my son got cut off of SSI and I got a bill for almost $20,000 for a “resource overpayment.” I spent weeks reconciling his expenses– every month they exceeded his SSI payment by several hundred dollars. I filed a Request for Reconsideration and met with an SSA Rep in our new city. She explained their process was to look at the bank balances- to include the Rep Payee Account– on the 1st of each month and, despite all of my receipts and proof of expenditures, none of that could or would be taken into consideration. (That is, there was no retroactive accounting.) She was able to make some adjustments for the months that checks were deposited early and got the bill dropped down to ~$13k (for which I am grateful). She also got his SSI restarted but now $74/mo is deducted. I absolutely misunderstood the Rep Payee account and don’t think it was clearly explained to me. There’s no way I would’ve neglected drawing from the account if I understood the consequences (getting my son cut off and a $20K bill and weekly collection letters and threats). I cannot be the first Rep Payee to misunderstand my role or have upheaval in my life and not draw funds from the account in a timely manner. It wasn’t fraudulent behavior and my son never went without. All his expenses and creditors were paid (by me). The only person I thought I was hurting was myself by not reimbursing myself promptly. How I wish the SSA didn’t wait two years to notify us about his assets exceeding the threshold. Had I been notified earlier, I might’ve sought clarification on the Rep Payee account and could’ve taken immediate corrective action to avoid this mess. Is there anything I can do at this point? Is there any remedy for someone in this situation? I’m sorry this is so long. I’m utterly embarrassed and so depressed by my error and how I’ve failed my son. Thank you for any advice you can provide.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Donna,

          You can request waiver of repayment claiming that the overpayment is not your fault because you didn’t understand your couldn’t reimburse yourself later and all that you had going on and not your son’s fault, but to have the waiver granted, your son also has to be unable to repay. If the waiver request is denied, you can request the overpayment be collected with monthly deductions from his benefits (if that is not what the $74 reduction is.)

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  19. Kathyt says:

    Hi Kay,

    I was approved for SSI in Feb 2014 at the reduced benefit of 488. I live and co-own a co-op single family home with my brother who uses it as a vacation home. I own one third equity in the home and requested an increase to full SSI benefits April 2014 once I began paying one third of taxes and maintenance and half the utilities for the co-op. I never heard from them and sent a second request letter Feb 2015 and left voicemails half a dozen times with no reply This June a customer service rep said on the phone that the file indicated that I was denied because I could not pay rent on a property I co-owned. She told me to contact the case woker. I immrdiately left a voicemail and wrote a third request letter explaining that I am not paying rent but send my brother a check for my share of the expenses because I am legally blind and cannot write checks easily.

    That letter was sent two weeks ago so my question is, how long should I wait and what procedure should I follow if again I get no response? It seems like a tactic so you’ll give up and go away so they can avoid making an appealable official decision. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kathy,

      The decision to reduce your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) may be correct even if the reason given was incorrect. You are a partial owner of the property, but your brother and, apparently, the third owner do not live there. This means any payment they make on the utilities (power, heat, water/sewer and garbage) is income to you. I am uncertain whether property taxes are included in determining shelter costs. If they are, then any portion of the taxes that your brother or anyone else pays is also income to you.

      If you think that your brother and the other owner are paying less than $245 a month for these things, you can file a Request for Reconsideration (Form SSA-502, which can be found online) saying that you received verbal notice on a certain date that your benefit would not be increased due to the one-third reduction and that you are rebutting that assumption. Submit a copy of the property title, copies of the utility bills and tax statement, and a letter from your brother stating how much he pays and that you pay the rest by sending him the money for him to send in.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  20. Moses Powell says:

    Dear Ms. Derochie:
    Currently I receive the SSI federal maximum benefit of $733 plus the New York State supplement of $87. I may be moving to North Carolina soon so my question is how much, if any, will I receive as their state supplement? I will be living with a friend who will charge me $500/month. I know that I will be eligible for both Medicaid and SNAP benefits. However, since I will NOT be living in an adult home I don’t believe that I would qualify for the $554 supplement. Any information that you can provide would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Mr. Powell,

      I do not have figures on the North Carolina state supplement but I doubt it is as much as $544. In order for your federal payment of $733 to stay the same, your $500 payment for housing either has to be as a renter paying fair market value or as a member of the household paying your share of rent or mortgage and utilities (power, heat, water/sewer, and garbage) and your share of food if you are sharing food.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  21. Blessed2015 says:

    I was receiving TANF/Work First from Social Services for my son only. He just got approved for SSI. So you mean to tell me they are going to take the money out of his backpay? Why can’t his father be responsible for paying it back?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Blessed2015,

      The law requires that the state or county be reimbursed for payments made to a disabled person while their claim for SSI disability is pending. The repayment is made from the back pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  22. Angel says:

    I have applied for ssi for my son and on Friday the ssi office called and told me they needed my check stub .and the lady told me my case was looking really good what do that mean he is approved

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Angel,

      I believe that your son’s claim has been medically approved and is now undergoing a financial update review to determine financial eligibility and payment amount.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  23. Nene says:

    Hi I got approved for ssi I go for my interview Monday i just have a question I filed in 2012 got denied and just re filed feb 08 2015 and got approved how long do the go back for back pay the first time I got denied or when I refilled

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Nene,

      If your February 2015 application was a new application and not an appeal, your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments will begin to accrue March 2015.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  24. Lillian says:

    Hi I had a question My son just got approved for ssi he received his first payment June 1st 2015 we live with his uncle along with my other son its four people in all I only receive 488 a month in ssi payments for my son his uncle want me to pay him rent of 350 a month what should I do how should i pay him im only receiving 488 I supply me and my kids own food to eat was told i could use some back pay money to move but im gonna need at least two months before I can do that and i still have to buy household needs for me and my kids

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lillian,

      Your child’s SSI payments are being reduced because he is receiving free housing and utilities. If $350 is market rate for a room rental and you use $350 of his SSI to pay the rent and you report it to the Social Security Administration, his SSI will increase to $733 two months after you start paying the rent.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  25. Stephanie says:

    Hi Kay,

    After 3 years of fighting SSDI I finally won my appeal. Which is absolutely well needed as I have worked since I was 16 and now 38 with MS and Epilepsy and have been unable to work due to the disease progress. I have 4 children 1 just turned 18 and works part time. I lost my home and me and my children had to move in with their father because I had no other income or anywhere to go.
    I have been relying on him to provide for me and the kids for the last 3 years. We’re not married but have a shared checking account only so I can make arrangements on bill pay and can get food for meals. Will his income impact my ssdi amount?
    Also, once I get my ssdi finally situated will I be able to get additional funds for my minor children?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Stephanie,

      The financial assistance you have gotten from your ex-husband will not affect your Social Security benefits in any way. If your earnings were high enough that your maximum family benefit is higher than your own benefit, dependents benefits will be payable to your children. If you listed all the children on the original application and they are eligible, your eighteen-year-old will receive his or her retroactive benefits directly.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  26. Thomas says:

    Hi Kay I had a quick question about the ssi back payments for my son and was hoping you could help me out with something? My son has been receiving ssi for about 2 1/2 he is only 6 turning 7 come November. Now I set up the dedicated account like Social Security wanted me to in the beginning and it took about a month before the first installment of his back payment had came in they told me every 6 months until the third installment which would be the final where he would get the rest somewhere in the area of 20,000$ now The first payment was put in the woman I spoke with at Social Security said its an automatic thing the money would be placed into the dedicated account every 6 months 180 days so there was no need to call just but the second payment came in about 9 months later after they sent a letter saying they wanted all the receipts which I keep and I follow their guidelines when speaking to the woman at Social Security I told her that there was no more money in the dedicated account this was before I received the second installment of 2000 plus dollars 9 months later and she scolded me for not calling up and telling them the account was empty when they told me it would be automatic they would send paperwork for me to file the receipts with them showing that the money went to the proper things witch I did in the time frame its been 7 months since the second installment has came in I have all the receipts and documents showing that it went to my son and his disabilities for educational purposes and medical purposes so I called up Social Security to let them know because I didn’t want no one being nasty with me on the phone when one of these letters come in and I file the receipts they said their we’re no notes on his file for the third and final payment to be put into the account? I asked if they could make note I called and asked what to do and offered the receipts for the second payment installment because of the first time and they said fine. So now it’s actually going on 2 1/2 yrs and could use some of the final installment to fix up things for my son in the house and make living more easy for him while still following the rules and regulations of the dedicated money. But about a month ago when I first got a hold of Social Security to tell them the money wasn’t automatically put into the dedicated account my bank shut down the savings account for lack of funds they did say the money could still be put into that account then transfer to another savings account that I would have to open and of course give Social Security all the info again. I’m just wondering is this a normal thing that they do not automatically put the money into the accounts? And what should I do now ? The ppl at my local Social Security office aren’t very friendly even when you have all the right documents and paperwork in front of you but still its not for me its for my son so I can take some of their verbal abuse again if needed like I did last time for not notifying them about the money in the account reaching 0. I’m just wondering what steps to take now after all this time to actually get them to deposit the rest of his money into the account so I can take further steps of making a new dedicated account and giving them the account information and signing any paperwork they need plus giving them the receipt from the second installment of the money I just know somehow it’s going to be my fault that I didn’t call up or do something but I did call up the 1-800 number and have it put on file that I did call up requesting the last installment. Now the second payment might have been put in longer then 9 months away from the first one but after being scolded I started counting the months and it’s been a little bit past 7 months from the second payment being put in because the bank shut down the account after 30 days of being empty. Again just wondering what appropriate steps I should take so his 3rd and last lump sum payment comes in and hopefully I don’t get the same women again raising her voice at me for not letting ss know the account is empty and I have all the receipts and documents they need . Thanks for any help :)

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Thomas,

      I don’t think the bank is going to accept money into a closed account to be transferred to another account. I suggest that you talk with the bank about this to see if they can reactivate the account with the same number. (It’s possible that electronic deposit from Social Security was rejected because the account was closed.)

      Once you are clear about what is possible at the bank and open a new account there if you have to, visit your local Social Security office and ask to see a claims representative or call the 800 number and ask for an appointment with a claims rep. If you don’t get one set up within the next two weeks, go in. If they want to know what the appointment is to be about, say it has to do with SSI resource reporting and getting release of the final back pay.

      Take the proofs of the use of the second installment with you to the interview to take care of that part of the situation. Also take documents from the bank that show that the account was closed with zero balance and reopened or the documents for the new account. After you have presented all this, ask whether they need anything more from you to release the funds. If they say no, ask what has to be done on their part. Then ask whether they can do it while you are there.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Rose says:

        Hello. I had a stroke from my uncontrolled type 1 diabetes and grand mal seizures so now my vision worsened. I have retinitis. I am considered legally blind. How much will I receive on ssi. The social security office told me, legally blind person makes more but I’m not sure If That’s also for ssi benefits.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Rose,

          There are some differences for individuals who are blind or legally blind. For example, if you wish to work while receiving benefits, the amount you can earn is greater than a sighted person and there are special Supplemental Security Income (SSI) blind work expenses that reduce countable earned income. Actual benefit amounts are not higher for Social Security or SSI when it comes to federal payments. It is possible that some states that pay an SSI state supplement have a higher rate for individuals who have been approved based on blindness.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  27. Samantha Letterman says:

    I was recently approved for ssi. I originally applied in late 2012 after a severe car accident and was denied because they said my disability wouldnt last more than a year. During 2013 I tried to work 2 different jobs and couldn’t do either of them. In late 2014 my orthopedic surgeon told me that my disability was getting worse and id likely be unable to work again. I applied for ssi again in February 2015 and found out I was approved for ssi on may 2nd 2015. My question is; will they go back to 2012 when I originally applied for the back pay or will it be based on this application?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Samantha,

      If you did not appeal the first denial and the current approval is based on a new claim, not on an appeal, your benefits will be based on the February 2015 application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  28. Sheri Whitelock says:

    Hi Kay,
    You’ve helped a lot of people, I hope you can help me out.
    My Down syndrome / ADHD son receives SSI since I divorced in 2003 ($794.40), he does not receive child support because of this. He turns 17 this month, his sister does get child support ($650.00) and turns 18 in 2 years and 5 months. I also receive money from IHSS, these are my only incomes.
    I’m renting a small house in La Mesa Ca and my landlord died, so the children’s are giving me first choice to buy the place. At first I thought no way, but others told me to try. A parent of another DS boy does home loans and she’s helping me. She told me that they can’t use the child support as income, because it has to be ongoing for 3 years. At my last visit with SSI, he told me that if dad past away (he has cancer, but is ok right now) and I no longer got the child support, that the SSI payment would increase. Is this true and for the entire amount ? If so, could I go get a statement of this for my lender, she’s trying to find the right program for me, a friend might put up the down payment for part ownership ? The owners wants an offer soon and I can’t call my SSI worker til Monday. Trying to get an idea, but the sights I’ve been on don’t answer my questions. Can you please enlighten me, thank you, Sheri

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sheri,

      I don’t think that you can predict your disabled child’s future SSI payments as related to the father passing away. If he is insured for Social Security Disability or survivor benefits, your child’s SSI could go down if her father is approved for Social Security Disability benefits or dies because both children could be eligible for Social Security Survivor benefits, which could reduce or, if the the Social Security is more than the SSI, eliminate the SSI entirely. Your disabled child’s income could end up being $20 more than now with part coming from Social Security and part from SSI or it could reflect an even greater increase with all coming from Social Security. (Note that the maximum federal SSI payment is $733 so your child may already be receiving the federal maximum with an SSI state supplement added. I don’t know whether the supplement could go up.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  29. Edna Henderson says:

    My son has been on SSI since 2010 he is now 19. We want to buy a house to make his life easier, he will still live with us. It has been mentioned that we can get a better morgage with him as a third signing party. Will having him as a third party affect his check. We are planning charging him rent to cover part of the morgage

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Edna,

      Your son can own or partially own a property that he lives on and still receive SSI. If you pay the down payment on the house without his putting in his share, he will probably be ineligible for SSI the month in which the house closes escrow making him a partial owner. He will be ineligible because he will have received as a gift the value of one-third of the home. Ownership of the house will not affect his eligibility thereafter as long as he lives on the property.

      It would not be appropriate to charge your son rent because he will be a partial owner. Instead, in order not to be receiving support from you, he should pay his share of the mortgage and utilities. If three live in the house, his share is one-third.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Edna Henderson says:

        This is to be a USDA loan and since we live in Oregon and are first time home buyers we will get a grant to pay the down payment. Does that change the one month
        ineligiblebility? Yes you are correct about rent, I mis-spoke I ment his share of the morgage.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Edna,

          Whether or not the grant for the down payment is income to your son depends on the source. If it is treated the same as HUD subsidized housing, it will not be income and will not affect his SSI. Be prepared to submit documentation of the grant so a determination can be made.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  30. Patty says:

    I’m 65 years old. I receive $733.00 through Social Security. If I were to get married and my husband also received Social Security would I still receive my Social Security after we are married? If my husband were to die before a 10 year period would I be able to receive his and or my Social Security income after his passing?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Patty,

      The benefit amount you mentioned is the maximum Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit based on financial need and not Social Security retirement or Social Security Disability. If you are receiving SSI, your benefit is likely to be reduced or stop when you marry. If you receive SSI, I suggest that you tell Social Security the gross amount of your possible husband’s Social Security and ask them to calculate the impact of marrying on your SSI benefit. If you are receiving SSI only now and the SSI were to stop with marriage, when he died you would either receive Social Security widow’s benefits or widow’s benefits and some SSI to supplement depending on how high the widow’s benefits were. (See below.)

      If you are, in fact, receiving Social Security (not SSI), your benefit will not be adversely affected by marrying. If your husband were to die after you had been married for nine months, you would be eligible for widow’s benefits if the widow’s benefits are higher than your own benefit. Otherwise you would continue to receive your own Social Security benefit. (The ten-year rule is for divorced spouses.)

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Mary says:

        My question is about SSI. I was recently approved. As many people report is was a long haul. I have not yet gone into the appointment at the local ssa office where they look at your finanaces and determine backpay and all that and get you “started” with monthly ssa payments. I am not all that excited as some people may be because out of desparation I did have subsidized SE work during my waiting period so there will be deductions for that and I am very famialiar with the formula..anyhow I hear it takes about a month and then I will receive a letter telling me when to go in.
        So my question is: my brain and nerves are overloaded and stressed with everything I read online about resource limits. I have read comments from other ssi receipients on various websites, I have read literature publicshed online from the ssa, I have read stuff on expert on ssi/ssd website,s,, and so what I am concerned about is this: i will be getting some back pay starting at the time I applied about a year and a half ago. I understand that my earnings from self employment ( subsidized unsuccessfull work attempts mostly as mentioned to the judge and attorney) will be deducted and all that… ( I did make some good money but it was never over the $1,090 . limit in a month. and my bank account balance was always under $2,000 . HOwever my concern is and I am not sure of this issue which I am about to explain I received a check April 1,personal check that did not have the correct amount on it ( was suppose to be $250 not $850-so a week later I got in touch with the payor and hesaid go ahead and shred and we will meet up sometime and he will give me a correct check with the right amount.. .. so a few months went by we forgot about it and then I found the check in my shred pile and called him to see if I can pick up the new check and he said well if u havent trashed the old check just cash it and I can pay him back the difference next time when I see him . So at the time I cashed it recently- it did not push me over the resource limit of 2k in the bank however it appears at the time that I was “holding onto it” the incorrect amount would have pushed me over the 2k limit for a few months, even though the amount was significantly higher than what it was suppose to be. So now i have deposited the entire big check ( incorrect amount) into my bank…. and when I see the payee next week I will either give him the portion of his refund either by writing a check back to him for amount of overpayment or just give him the cash ( I would have to go to my bank and w/d- as I keep 99% of my money in the bank) so when i go into my appointment are they going to be huffy puffy about the check and say that i was over the limit since the check didn’t get shredded ( meant to) and that the check was made out to be as the payor and all….?? I was good at managing money matters during the first year and a half of this journey but the past several months of this calendar year- I have been sick ( phenmonia) and other stressed and have managed paperwork and money very sloppy. reason I am so concerned is from all the stuff I have read online since the time I was approved for ssi end of last month.

        • Mary says:

          my worry is they could say that because the check was made out to me as the payee, that it could be considered a cash resource at the time i received it,, but I stand at the principal of the thing,,that is was clearly an error made by a senior citizen… also seems like in almost every blog online lately they I read people have been overpayed for one reason or another by ssi and then they just repay the money… my situtaion is the same although it is not a check from ssi…..
          and for frame of reference: the reason I am so worried and stressed about this is because I did not ready anything on ssi online until just recently, as my case was just approved in court- prior to that I didn’t read anything on line so now I am cramming all this info in and its scary!
          the only thing i knew prior to my approval was that I can’t have over 2k in my bank accounts on the first day of each calendar month,, that is what they count.

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Mary,

            It is possible that Social Security will count the uncashed check as a resource. My response to your first post offers an argument to make that it should not be cashed. The worst that can happen is that you will not be paid SSI for the months you were over the $2,000 resource limit.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Mary,

          I suggest 1) repay with a check so that you have the cancelled check as proof of repayment of the overpayment; 2) return the money in the same month you cashed the check; and
          3)get a statement from the payer that states
          a) the date and amount of the $850 check,
          b) that the check was made out in the wrong amount and that it should have been $250,
          c) the fact that he told you to shred it because it wasn’t due to you and that he would replace it with the correct amount and the date he told you that ;
          d) that when you reported discovering the check wasn’t shredded, he or she told you to cash it and refund the difference and the date this occurred.
          e) the amount you refunded and the date of the refund.

          Hopefully Social Security will consider the check unavailable to you as of that date because the payer told you not to cash it. Also hopefully, Social Security will consider only $250 of the check to be income.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  31. Leslie says:

    I understand what you are saying, but why would they find him disabled and not at least give him medicaid? Isn’t that the purpose of SSI? I found out his protected date was 8/13/12. I will let you know how the SSA takes in consideration, the back child support, so maybe you can helps others who ask. As I understand it, our income can be up to $3,000.00, as a couple. So, in that case, our income for the month would be $2,586.00. I know I maybe getting “assets” and “income” confused, but we have no assets, except my income. I have reviewed all of your pages and found nothing to try and “figure” what the end result would be. I read all of your examples, and all I got was more confused..lol. Anyway, thank you, and I will be giving you an update after tomorrow.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Leslie,

      The point of a medical decision is to qualify medically for cash benefits–either Social Security or Supplemental Security Income. In some states, Medicaid coverage is automatic with entitlement to SSI. Your husband can apply for Medicaid in a state or county social service office to see whether he qualifies without SSI (if he is financially ineligible for SSI).

      Resources are what you own at the end of the month and carry over to the next month, for example, savings, stocks, bonds, the value second vehicles or property you do not live on. Income is money, such as your wages, that comes in during a month. The $3,000 limit is for resources (assets), not for income. The only help I can offer with deeming calculations is the examples in the deeming articles that you refer to.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  32. Leslie says:

    Dear Kay,

    I live in Texas. My husband became disabled approximately July 2012. He has glaucoma.(He applied for SSI because of not having enough work credits) After almost 3 years, we received a phone call from our local SS Office today, telling us to come and bring information on my income. She only asked that I bring it from August of 2014 to present. Can you tell me if that means they are only considering him disabled as of that date? And what do I need to take to the SS Office? The representative said bring my income, my apartment lease, and information on my bank account. Do I have to print bank statements all the way back to Aug 2014? I don’t want to leave anything to chance and want to be fully prepared. I’ve searched the web looking for “what to bring” but to no avail. I have 3 days to get everything together.

    Thank you so much!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Leslie,

      Please tell me the date of the last application he filed. Was he approved on a single application filed three years ago or did he file multiple times (filed, not appealed) and also did he had to have a hearing to be approved? With that information, I may be able to comment on the August 2014 date. Yes, take copies of each month’s bank statement and all your pay stubs back to July 2014.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Leslie says:

        Application was in July 2012, we hired an attorney and appealed the case. Hearing was approximately 8 months ago. The ALJ wanted more recent evidence. He was sent to 3 more doctors, all confirming his diagnosis. Decision was made yesterday, and said he was approved for medical, but we have to go into the SS Office this Friday. My gross is $2,196.00, plus I received child support of $390.00 for children that are 30, 28, & 25. (Back support from deadbeat dad). So, I don;t know if he will receive any money, or just medical.

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Leslie,

          I do not know whether your husband will be financially eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) because I do not know how Social Security law will treat the back child support for your adult children. If it is being paid to you instead of to the children, it may count as income in the month it is received. On the other hand, Social Security law may consider it to be something like the repayment of “loan” in that you are effectively being repaid for supporting the children by yourself. If the money is treated as a repayment, it would be like your money coming back to you and wouldn’t count. I would be interested in knowing what they determine.

          If your husband is not eligible for SSI, he probably won’t be eligible for Medicaid either. The “medical approval” is a determination that he is disabled, not a determination of eligibility for health insurance separate from SSI eligibility.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  33. Rogers Hornsby says:

    My daughter has been receiving SSI since she was four years old. I will start drawing my Retirement SSI in a couple of months. Will my daughter lose hers?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rogers,

      I am assuming that your daughter has never been married and I am responding based on that assumption.

      You daughter will be required to apply for Social Security Disabled Adult Child benefits when you begin to receive benefits. Whether or not her Supplemental Security Income (SSI) continues depends on how high her Social Security benefit is. If she is now receiving $733, her SSI will stop entirely if her Social Security benefit is $753 or more. If that happens and she loses Medicaid entitlement with the SSI, she can apply under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) for insurance within sixty days of Medicaid terminating. If she waits longer to apply, she will have to wait for the annual open enrollment period in the last quarter of the year.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  34. Jennifer says:

    Wanted also to add that we applied in Dec., 2014 when he was 18 and just recently turned 19 and we just received approval letter. ty.

  35. Jennifer says:

    Hi Kay, my 19yo son with autism just got approved for SSI and he will be getting about $88 per month. He has no income, lives with us and is in a job training program but does not work and my husband’s and my income provides all of his housing, food, clothing, etc. Why is this benefit so low? We hope he will be placed in a part-time job later this summer, but won’t that reduce his benefits to zero? Also, is he automatically enrolled in Medicaid and is it better for him to stay on our private insurance or Medicaid or can he do both? Many thanks.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jennifer,

      I think that you meant to write that your son was getting Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in the amount $488, not $88. The SSI program is a public welfare program and it is is being provided, his benefit is reduced. If he starts paying his share of food and shelter costs, his benefit can increase to $733 a month. If he pays some amount less than his share and the gap between his share and what he pays is less than $266 ($246 if he has other countable income), he could receive an increase less than the maximum.

      The first $65 of your son’s work earnings does not reduce his SSI and only half of his earnings above that counts to reduce the benefit. If he is a student, the amount of non-countable work earnings increases. If he has some goal to reach self-support and the goal involves some expenditures, he could look into a Plan for Achieving Self-Support (PASS), which could allow all his work earnings to be excluded.

      As far as the insurance goes, I suggest that you check with both your private insurance and the local social service office that administers Medicaid to find out how the two would relate to each other (which would be first payer) if he had both and also whether there would be any limitations on getting your son back on your insurance if his Medicaid stopped in the future. You might also research whether accessibility to health care providers is greater on private insurance. For example, do his current providers accept Medicaid?

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  36. David says:

    I was recently approved for presumption ssi. I live in motor home which I pay 300 a month for rent and utilities. My landlord has been very kind as I go through hard times, but I am still responsible for rent past and present. I am not sure how the ssa looked at this as they said my monthly ssi would be 488 a month. I have been getting ebt help. I have no other income. my sister been trying to help on other things but has did but that has to end now as she could. These is my condition for now. why did they deduct from the amount of 733? advice please.. Thank you..David

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear David,

      If you are incurring a debt for your rent and utilities, the rent being past due will not reduce your SSI. I do not know what EBT is and you do not say how your sister has helped you but the $488 amount seems to indicate she and/or EBT paid bills or bought things for you without giving you cash. If you did not receive cash, the value of the food and/or utilities and/or rent that your sister or EBT has paid counts to reduce your SSI. If they been buying you or paying for you anything else such as clothing, personal care items, medical co-pays, or telephone, or gasoline, those purchases do not lower SSI benefits. So, if the in-kind (non-cash) assistance you got for shelter and food came to less than $264 (or less than $244 if you have other income) in any month, you can appeal the calculation of that month’s or those months’ benefits. If they gave you cash, then cash counts. In any event, once you start to receive benefits and start to pay your rent, utilities, and food yourself (with or without food stamps), report that to Social Security and your benefit will be increased two months later.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  37. Angela Davis says:

    OK I was living with my daughter and I get $488.67 a month and I moved out in to my own place me and my three kids and my rent is 700 and I need to put house hold things and beds in my home 7,000 is my back pay do you think they can help me I get ssi

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Angela,

      The amount you are receiving causes me to believe that you may already be getting SSI (Supplemental Security Income). If so, report to Social Security that you have moved out of your daughter’s house and provide a copy of your rental agreement. Once the report is processed, your SSI benefits should increase to $733 beginning two months after the first full month you were no longer living with your daughter.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  38. my ssi was stopped because of resources, but I no longer have any resources. I just got approved for Medicaid and snaps so will by ssi benefits be started again, and will they give me back pay. It stopped my benefits in 2012. Do I have to re-apply for them.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Barbara,

      Because you have been ineligible for more than twelve months, you must file a new claim and be found currently disabled in order for payments to start again. Benefits will begin to accrue the month after the month you apply unless you apply on the first of the month in which case benefits start with the month of application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  39. Brandi says:

    Hi my ssi worker was made my paycheck stubs sitting on her desk for 2 months on the first month my son check was reduced to $45 the second month it increased to $234. And for next month I received a letter stating that it will be 0 and that his Medicaid was terminated.. they have my wages estimated at over $4600 a month oh how I wish… so I called her after 4 unsuccessful attempts. She finally called back today and stated that his check went back to normal when can I expect the back money from her mistake….

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Brandi,

      If the representative has already input the corrections to your son’s computer record, you will receive the underpaid benefits within about a week. If she hasn’t done the computer work yet, then it will be a week or bit more after she does.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  40. Shari Shugar says:

    My elderly parents are paying my sister’s rent payment for years. My sister is currently on disability and has been for sometime. Of course my mother and father cannot continue to pay her rent. What is her course of action in getting SSI benefits to assist her with her living expense?

    Thanking you in advance for any help with this matter.

    Sincerely,

    Shari Shugar

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Shari,

      If your sister is receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI) of less than $753 a month or has combined income from SSDI and other sources, including the in-kind income in the form of the rent payment, she can apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits as soon as her parents stop paying her rent. Another possibility would be for her to apply for government subsidized housing, although there can be a long waiting list.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  41. kristi says:

    Hello want to know if I can get on ssi ..my huband makes 1 800 a month 2 jobs ..no kids I’m housewife and yard work ofc he will help on his dayoff.anyway deaf and wonder if I can file for ssi just to help out payoff bills and extra money for food etc . How much will I get if I approves for ssi or ssa.. I worked some

    • kristi says:

      thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kristi,

      If you have enough work to be insured for Social Security Disability, the benefit will be calculated based on your past work earnings. You can go to http://www.ssa.gov and set up a “My Social Security” account and then request your earnings record, which will tell you whether your are insured for disability benefits. You can go to the article “What Are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect SSI Payment Amounts and Qualifying for SSI Disability? under the SSI tab at the top of each page on this website and use the formula in the example calculation to estimate the amount of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) you might be eligible for.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  42. Lee Stewart says:

    Hi Kay
    thank you for maintaining this site it is very helpful to a lot of people.

    Our Son receives SSI of $733 , he is permanently disabled and lives with us (Mother and Father in Alabama)
    I will be 62 this year and applying for SS and i have several questions trying to figure out which way is the best for our family.

    1. My wife is our sons primary care giver all these years and will be so is she eligible for 1/2 of my benefit ? or just the reduced calculated amount per the SSA web site which says she may get half if he is a “qualifying child”.. but not sure we understand the term “qualifying child”)

    2. Can my son also receive 1/2 of my benefit which would be more than than his SSI? and if so, does he lose access to medicaid if he files under my benefit? I was told that informally by a friend but i guess i need to contact medicaid to be sure? it would make a big difference in health / insurance costs.

    thank you in advance for any advice you can offer

    Lee

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lee,

      I am assuming that your son has been disabled since prior to age twenty-two and is unmarried. If that is the case, he will qualify for Social Security disabled adult child benefits on your earnings record. As such, he will be a “qualifying child” for your wife to also be eligible on your earnings record.

      Your earnings record will provide a benefit for you, which is called a primary insurance amount (PIA). If your earned family maximum benefit (FMB) is more than your PIA, the difference between the PIA and FMB, is payable to your dependents. For example, if your PIA is $1,200 and your family maximum is $1700 and both your son and your wife apply, they would split $500 and each would receive $250. You can find out your PIA and FMB by going to http://www.ssa.gov and setting up an online “My Social Security” account and then requesting an earnings statement (not a benefit statement). The statement will give you an estimate of your benefit and your family maximum benefit. Otherwise, you can call Social Security at 1=800-772-1213 and request an earnings statement (again, not a benefit statement).

      If your family maximum is high enough to pay a dependent benefit, the SSI program requires that your son apply for that dependent benefit as a disabled adult child. If he does not apply, his SSI will be terminated. If the dependent benefit is less than $753, his SSI and Medicaid will continue. If he loses his SSI, he may or may not be eligible for continuing Medicaid in your state. If he is not, you can apply for health insurance for him through the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). With low income, he might qualify for a government subsidy to pay the premiums. Application must be made within sixty days of Medicaid terminating; otherwise, he will have to wait until the open enrollment period in the last calendar quarter of the year.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Lee Stewart says:

        Thank You Kay very helpful!

        yes he was disabled at Birth (Downs Syndrome)
        he began receiving SSI after he was 19 due to our income.
        I have an account on SSA.gov already so i will go and request an “earnings statement” and review that and come back if I have any additional questions
        Regards
        Lee

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Thanks for the clarification, Lee.

          • Lee Stewart says:

            Kay I went to my SSA.Gov account and looked and didn’t see an “earnings statement option” I did see the standard earnings data that shows my income on an annual basis going back to 1970 which is correct as well as an option to print a statement that has my estimated benefits, and “earning record”
            which i downloaded and have. but it doesn’t have a PIA call out. just the standard info. and estimated benefits so i did a global search on SSA.gov on the term “earning statement” and it took me to a form SSA 7050… which is for a detailed certified earnings statement and costs $136 to obtain.. is that what you were referring to?
            thanks
            Lee

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Lee,

            I was referring to the record you obtained. The exact format may have changed. The estimated benefit would be your estimated PIA. The document should also have an estimate for dependents benefits.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

      • Lee Stewart says:

        Kay I called the 1-800 # and requested an “earning statement and the individual on the phone didn’t know what i was talking about. ugh— I tried to explain I needed to determine what my PIA and FMB were and they didn’t recognize the acronyms at all. they kept saying everything i needed was in my “Benefits Statement’ I explained why I was asking and that didn’t register with them either . So I’m not sure what to do but go to ,my local office and see some one face to face. I can find PIA and FMB all over the SS.gov web site and they explain it in great detail but for some reason this individual was not at all aware of the terms
        Question: looking at my benefits statement
        Is the PIA close to what they show as my full benefit at age 66? and the FMB close to what they show as Maximum Family benefits ? or am i way off on this?
        thanks..
        PS: please ignore email i sent yesterday on same topic

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Lee,

          Yes, “full benefit at age 66″ is the PIA and Maximum Family Benefit is the MFB. (I believe that I may have reversed the words and letters in the acronym in my original response.) By the way, any time you seem to be getting a person on the phone who seems less than knowledgeable, try calling back and asking the same questions. You are may to get a different, better trained person.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

          • Lee Stewart says:

            Thanks Kay I did as you suggested and did get a very knowledgeable person whom confirmed what you suggested as well as was able to provide me detailed estimates of benefit payments for myself, my Disabled Adult Child as well as His mother/ my wife who is his caregiver so I am able to plan more accurately now. thanks again for all your insight and help very much appreciated!

          • Kay Derochie says:

            You are welcome, Lee.

    • paul says:

      HI kay!

      So i’ve been trying to apply ssi for my mom for quite sometime now. My mom is retired and is receiving ssa $630. She lives with me and pays $400 to help with the rent which is $1250. This only leaves her with $230 for food and other expenses which is practcially nothing . We finally got the award letter back and she was only awarded $5. I went in to figure out why she was only awarded $5, and they responded “”in order for her to receive the full ssi benefits she needs to pay Half of the total monthly expenses. Which is nearly all her monthly income and some. Help please. How can she qualify?

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Paul,

        Your mother is receiving in-kind (non-cash) support and maintenance in the form of subsidized housing and for that reason her benefit is being reduced. I suggest that she contact the state or county social services office to see whether she qualifies for food stamps.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  43. amanda says:

    I was wondering my husband adopted his step daughter and then later on she went to live with her mom and her mom got a ssi check on her after she moved out of our house and someone else adopted her we just recently found out that my husband is s listed as her dad on the social security website but her birth certificate has been changed would they have used any of my husband social security he paid in on her

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Amanda,

      I am not certain I understand the situation. If you can clarify a couple points for me, I may be able to respond. How was the birth certificate changed? Was the mother’s name removed or your husband’s name? If your husband’s did he legally give up his status as parent when the other adoption occurred? Is your husband receiving Social Security Disability or Retirement benefits? What was the “SSI” benefit paid for the child? Was it Supplemental Security Income (SSI) being paid because the child is disabled or was she getting a Social Security dependents benefit because she was your husband’s adopted minor child?

      Thank you,
      Kay

  44. Russell Lolley says:

    My wife is already on SSI and I am her payee I was approved for
    ssi and will have my first check April 1st The judge approved ne from Dec 2013 thru ongoing since we are married we get 550.00 a month each They are taking back the balance of what she was getting before my date ex.721.00 and 733.00 was her check the repayment will be a little less than 200.00 a month since my beginning date My ?? is will they still give me 550.00 minus what her overpayment was since all bills were paid by her only. We do get Snap for food but that’s all.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Russell,

      I think you are asking whether you will get back pay after your wife’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI ) claim is recalculated a member of an eligible couple and your benefit is reduced by her overpayment for the same period. The answer to that question is yes. For example, in the months that the Federal Benefit Amount (FBR) is $733 for an individual and $1,100 for a couple, you will receive $367, which is $1,100 minus $733.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Russell Lolley says:

        Thanks for your fast reply; my other question is the judge said my onset date was Dec 2013 but the letter about my wifes SSI shows the repayment starts at May 2014 So did they read it wrong if so what do I need to do??

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Russell,

          The date you became disabled is not necessarily the date benefits begin. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) starts with the month after the month of application unless you applied on the first of the month in which case payment starts the month of application. If you applied for SSI in April, your benefits would start in May and your wife’s benefits would be recalculated beginning with that month.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  45. Sade jackson says:

    Hi my son has just been approved for SSI (getting max. allowed) and I only make about $18,000 a year. I’m trying to get another job and that job makes about $22,000… I was wondering if I secured the job for $22,000 would that disqualify him from getting future SSI payments. I am a single parent and have one other ineligible child.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sade,

      Your son will still be eligible for SSI if you get the $22,000 job and continue have one ineligible child in the household who has no income of his or her own.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Sade jackson says:

        Thank you for your response but I meant to say $26,000 a year not $22,000 sorry… So would he still be eligible??

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Sade,

          Your son will be eligible for SSI with one ineligible child and one parent with earned income of $26,000. The amount of the SSI, of course, will be less, but he will be eligible.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  46. Ria sen says:

    My parents receive SSI from last few years. They live in house I own and live at their own. Recently they were asked to renew their eligibility and were interviewed in person for 2 hours ( not sure if that’s common ) SSI office asked us to fill out a form saying they pay rent to me and I do not help them in any way (how me helping them in other things impact SSI benefits ??) They pay utilities and food and not exactly rent. I thought utilities are counted towards living expense/rent in this case but need advise. If we clarify that, would that impact their Benefit? Also since they have been receiving SSI from last few years and they did not ask about it until 2011, if we clarify that it is utilities and food, do we have to pay back? Please advise since it’s already too little amount and I would hate for them to lose that or worse, Pay some back. Please help.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ria,

      Free housing, utilities, and food are in-kind (non-cash) income under Supplemental Security Income (SSI) law. If I understand correctly, your parents live by themselves in a house you own and they are paying for their own utilities and food but are not paying for the right to live in the house. This means they are getting in-kind support from you in the form of free housing and they very likely are eligible for less SSI than they have been receiving and are overpaid. Also their ongoing benefit will be reduced because of the free housing.

      If their living arrangements have not changed (they have never paid rent to you) since when they first started to get benefits and they reported this in the past at the initial claim and/or at prior financial redetermination reviews, they may be successful in obtaining a waiver of collection of the overpayment because they were not at fault in causing the overpayment. They can request a waiver on form SSA-632. (If they disagree with the fact of the overpayment or how it was calculated, they can appeal on form SSA-561.)

      If you are buying your parents anything else beside food, housing, power, heat, water/sewer and garbage and are paying for the items or services directly and not giving them money, such help does not affect the SSI payment. For example, if you pay the phone company for a phone, buy them clothing and pay the store directly, or purchase paper and cleaning products to give them, these things would not affect their benefits.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  47. cierra says:

    i would like to know wen will my son start reciving his payments he got approved march 6th an she asked for my paystubs i faxed that over so how long he has to wait to start receving his benfits an his backpay? & do i have to call direct express for them to issue me a card for him or they take care of it once again please help me thank u

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Cierra,

      If you told the Social Security Administration that you do not have a bank account, they will request that one be issued to you. It can take from a week to a month or more to receive benefits after you have provided all the requested information.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  48. julie davis says:

    Hi,

    My 25 year old daughter receives ssi. She was renting a room, but recently was divorced, and moved back home. To receive her full benefit, do I have to charge her rent? Can she just pay her part of household expenses? I do not want to have to report rent income. we do not have rent or mortgage, as we live on a family trust property. I want to make sure everything is done legally. We are not supporting her. She pays all her bills and food.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Julie,

      You can have your daughter can pay her share of expenses. I am uncertain whether the free housing will cause a reduction in her Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit. You will probably have to provide a copy of the documents that give you the right to life on the property so that Social Security can figure that out. If you have ownership interest in the property, perhaps it will be considered your property that is paid for and have no effect on her benefit or it could be that legally you would all be receiving free housing.

      The simplest would be to charge her a flat rate for her room and pay any taxes that might be due on the net rental income after deductions for utilities or other rental expenses. If you decide to charge a flat rent, check with the IRS or a tax accountant to determine the tax impact.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  49. sandy says:

    I have meet the medical requirements from ssi disability I don’t think I can enough work credits I was for to wait for second letter in mail but then got a call to come in my daughter receives deaf benefits from her dad of little over 1300$ will this disqualify for ssi benefits

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sandy,

      Your daughter’s income does not affect your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability (SSDI) claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  50. Becky Kogele says:

    Hi Kay, I have a couple of related questions. I have an adult son who receives SSI benefits. The examiner told me to apply for SNAP benefits for him as an independent household. However, he lives with us so I’m not sure it is legal for us to apply for the SNAP benefits?
    Secondly, when I retire, can he receive benefits from my Social Security in addition to his SSI?
    Thank you for your advice.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Becky,

      If your son’s food is purchased and prepared separately from the food for the rest of the household, it is legal to apply for food stamps for him alone. If you all share food, then to get SNAP benefits, the family would have to qualify together based on the family’s income. If your son became disabled before age twenty-two and remains unmarried until the time that you retire, he can draw disabled adult child’s benefits from your retirement record assuming that your earnings are high enough that dependent benefits are payable in addition to your own benefit. His SSI benefits will be reduced by the amount of Social Security benefits he receives.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  51. Brittany Peevyhouse says:

    hi i had a q i went to my local ssi office here in east hemet c.a last week and reported that i was evicted out of my apt and temp in n out of a motel they lady wrote into the cop the motel adress n my room number but i told her i couldent pay this upcomming monday i receve $889.00 in bennifets from ssi witch is my only source of income and its just me my feoncie my dog and my cat i lost everything i own i have no mailing adress and no phone what so ever i get my mony on my direct exspres debit card but i wanted to know if i went in monday with my dog n my hubby to report im omeles and in a park cuz the lady said because i was living in a motel i wasent tec homeless but will they do something for me the same day as monday im 4 months preg and its so cold in the park i shiver all night long laying in the grass with one thin blanket 2 back paks a cart and a dog thaat pulls and i can barly hall it anywhere and we cant go to a shelter cuaz the do g but i need my dog im in prosses of trying to aford to reg as my esa i had a letter rec written out for me back in late 23 early 14 but over the last 2 years of being homeles on n off and raveling around i lost it and i cant drive nor can my hubby he dosent have an income but he gets food stapms but it wont last the month nor pay for a motel room or what not hes trying to look for woork but work in hemet is rare and it would b his first job he shuld quilfy for ssi as he has lots of phys and mental dissabilitys but we lost all his paper work back in lakewood ohio and no med insurance so we are not sure how to get him aplyd and aproved because we cant aford the docs and therapists and what not at all and we need shelter and food asap its sooo cold at night i feel like im getting sick and we dont know where to go we have lived in hemet for a year n a half and we had an apt the whole time but due to bad lad lords was forced to move into 4 diff apts within a year n a half rent varrys between 600 and 750 a month n a 2 bed room 1 ba 4 plex but all we need is a one bed room place that is ok with a cat and dog and a baby but close to were we are due to no ride friends or funds for a car ride with are things to it and i would love to rent for 500 a month with water trash and swear paid by land lord ill pay internet power if nesary ill pay gass but we havent needed to pay gass bill for a year now due to electric stove and a portalbe heater the les bills the better but we need shelter funds clothes and blankets help and food help i already went to are salvation army so i have to w8 till the end of may if i want or need anymore food and the comunity pantry on san jachento st wont take us in because we dont have are ssn cards but we know are nimbers by heart but they wont accept that and i dident have income proof at the time and i told them my husband dosent have any income but they still said no and turnd us away and with no transportation idk where to go or what to do

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Brittany,

      If you are now homeless and you are waiting for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) back pay, enough of the back pay can be made available to you to payment rental move in costs. You need to tell them how much you will need for rent and rental and utility deposits. If you still have your birth certificates, you can request replacement Social Security cards. If your husband is disabled, he can apply for SSI. He can explain on the application that he has not seen a doctor for some time because he has not had insurance or money to pay for the care. Social Security will send him for consultative examinations at their expense. Because you are pregnant, you qualify for WIC, which is a nutritional program for pregnant women and children. You can apply for WIC at your local state or county social services agency.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  52. jana says:

    Have a question. I made 587 last month and my son got 733 for his ssi payment and this month I made total of 852 will he get less now that I made more this month. I pay 500 rent please let me know how much will he get next month since I made more I have 4 kids and I a a single mother

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jana,

      If you are talking about gross work earnings and have no other income, your earnings of $852 are not high enough to affect your son’s benefit, but you do need to report the earnings changes each month so that if you earn more in the future, his benefit can be adjusted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  53. Nina Ford says:

    My son gets SSI for a hearing and vision and slight mental handicap. He started a new part time job in January I think he received three checks from his new job to which I sent them in to the Social Security Office. For the month of Jan he was sent his entire SSI amount. Then for the month of March he also recieved his entire amount. When will SSI adjust his amount so that he hasn’t gotten an over payment. Should I call the Social Security Office and let them know and should I take the money from his account and send it back? I would appreciate and info that you can give me..Thank You Nina Ford

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Nina,

      If your son’s earnings are low enough that he will continue to be eligible each month while he works, adjusts will be made two months later to avoid overpayments. Earnings paid in January should affect the March payment. Wages paid in February affect payment for April and so on. If your son worked in January but did not get paid till February, the first month affected would be April. Any month that his work pay varies from the prior month requires a report.

      Returning money could just make things more complicated. I suggest figuring an estimate of the amount his benefit will go down due to his work and hold onto that money and not spend it until an overpayment notice is received (if he is overpaid) and then use the money to repay.The first $65 gross earnings ($85 if he has no other earnings), does not count. For every two dollars earned over the base $65 (or $85), his SSI goes down.

      Note: if your son is a student under age twenty-two, he can earn more than the standard work earnings exclusions. You can reach about the excluded student earnings at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/ssi/spotlights/spot-student-earned-income.htm.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  54. Shauna says:

    hi I got approved and they’re saying that I get $307 a month but I’m trying to figure out what my back pay is going to be can anyone help me out here.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Shauna,

      If your benefit is Supplemental Security Income (SSI), multiply your monthly rate times the number of full calendar months since the date you applied. If your benefit is Social Security Disability (SSDI), count the number of months beginning with the later of the sixth full calendar month after you became disabled or twelve months before your application and ending with the current month. Multiply that number by the monthly rate. These calculations will give you a rough estimate of your back pay.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sinc

  55. Duke skipwith says:

    Hi kay
    Ok ive apply for ssi back in may 8 of2014
    I got deny the first time im on reconsideration
    Rite now ,i have chf,afib,morbid obesity,edema,hypertension,and bad eyesight blind in left eye my good eye is 20/400
    I went to a ce exam last yr
    Some the examiner calls me wants me to get
    A eye exam done which they did at the
    Ce exam nd they eye exam i did i payed out of
    Pocket kus DDs couldn’t get one quick enough
    I mean like my mom looked at the listing on ssa site i meet and equal a listing and i definitely meets legally blindness,do u know wats the hold up they started working on my reconsideration on October 31 of 2014 do u think i will get awarded benefits this go around i had a lawyer from the start i really need it not even the money the Medicaid,i don’t work im 25 had a job wen i was lik 19 last 4 months

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Duke,

      Decisions routinely take two to five months. If you are legally blind, you will be approved. If you are not approved on blindness, your combination of conditions may allow an approval. In the meantime, while you wait for a decision, you might apply to your state to see if you qualify for Medicaid independent of SSI approval.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  56. Michael T. says:

    Dear Kay,

    I have been called in for a review on my SSI and I currently pay rent and utilities for a house shared by other people, but I did not sign a contract with the landlord. Is there anything I can do to prove that I pay for rent and utilities? I currently just deposit cash for rent and write checks out to the person that has the utilities under their name. Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Michael,

      Get a written statement of the person to whom you are paying the rent. In the future, write checks for the rent.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  57. cody says:

    hi kay.. i was approved then was called and told it went to quality review .. what is quality review and will i be denied now because of this?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Cody,

      The Social Security Administration randomly selects a certain percentage of claims to be reviewed to be sure that the decisions being made are correct and to identify training needs if any.If the decision on your claim is correct based on the information in your claim file, the approval will be upheld. If not and the review results in a denial, you will have the right to appeal. I recommend appealing with an attorney. You do not have to pay any legal fees up front and you will pay attorney fees only if you are approved for benefits. Social Security law sets the amount your attorney can charge and the Social Security Administration pays the attorney directly from the retroactive award at the time it sends your back pay to you. So, it’s all very easy and risk-free

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  58. elizabeth tavares says:

    Hi how are u ??
    my son receives 624 a month from ssi and 23 dollars from ssa
    I receive welfare cash they count 109 from welfare from him I would love to know if I get a job how much can I make a month where it would make his ssi check less then what it is now?
    also can my boyfriend claim him on income tax would it affect his check

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Elizabeth,

      Whether or not your child’s SSI goes down because of your work earnings depends on how much you make. The first $65 is excluded, plus half of the amount above $65. Additionally, you are allotted a certain amount for your own support before any of your earnings affects his SSI. See the article “What Are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect An SSI Application for Children” under the SSI tab on this website for a sample calculation. Your earnings may affect the welfare payment.

      Your boyfriend needs to check with the IRS or a tax accountant regarding whether he can claim your son as a dependent. If he is giving money toward your son’s support or giving you money, you must report that to the Social Security Administration because it is countable income for SSI. If your boyfriend is your son’s father and he is living in your household, his income has to be counted in determining your son’s SSI benefit.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  59. confused says:

    Dear Kay,

    I have a couple of questions.. I filed for ssi and was denied my first time. I filed an appeal online and somehow messed it up. So I had to file another application and this time was approved for ssi without having to appeal. The EOD was dated for May 2013 even though I filed in October 2014 so, I was wondering will I be paid back to that date or will I only be paid back the date of the second application?
    My second question is, I am a represenative payee for my daughter because her father (who does not live with us) is disabled. So, I was wondering will they consider that money as my income even though the money is for my daughter?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Confused,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) does not pay retroactive benefits. Your benefits will be begin to accrue in October 2014 if you filed your application on the first of October. Otherwise, they will begin to accrue November 2014. Your daughter’s Social Security benefits are not your income and will not affect your SSI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  60. carrie says:

    I am a represenative payee for two of my children threw there father who is on social security. There father does not live us and I was just approved for ssi yesterday. I was wondering will they count my childrens money as my income when considering how much money I will recieve on ssi?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Carrie,

      Your children’s Social Security dependent benefits do not affect your eligibility for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Just be sure that you do not mix your money with theirs. The children’s benefits should go to an account titled “child’s name by your name, representative payee” so that it is clear the children’s money is not yours.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  61. Angela says:

    Hello,

    My 5 year old have been approved for ssi. He received his first payment January 2014. I had a review in December 2014 and was told his ssi was going down from $678 to $534. I have no job but I do pay for rent with the help of my child support and ssi. My only income is child support of $488/month for two children. I just got another letter stating my sons ssi was going back up for the month of February to $589 because his income decreased in the month of December. The thing is child support is consistent and doesn’t change so I’m confused on that. I’ve talked to my sister and she works full time making $11/hr and gets $686 in ssi. How could that be and I don’t work and my only income besides ssi is child support?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Angela,

      The first $20 of your disabled child’s income does not count in determining the benefit. If your disabled child is one of the children receiving child support and gets half of the figure you quoted, his or her federal SSI benefit in 2014 would be $497, that is $721 less $224. There was a cost of living increase in January so the federal SSI amount in 2015 would be $733 less $224 or $489.

      The amount that your child has been getting above the federal SSI must be a state supplement. Each state that offers an SSI state supplement has its own rules so you will have to check with the Social Security Administration about the calculation. You are right that if the family income has not changed, then the only change should have been a cost-of-living adjustment (increase) in the January payment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

    • henrietta goodson says:

      hi kate if ssi don’t pay retroactive benefits will my daughter get a back pay for ssi if she approve i been trying since 2007. she 26 and never really worked i been trying since 2007 for her benefits.

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Henrietta,

        Back pay is any money paid due for months prior to the month in which benefits are paid. Your daughter’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will begin the month after the month she last filed a new application. Nothing will be paid for months prior to that.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  62. Amanda says:

    My husband was approved for SSI, but has not received any benefits, due to the amount of money that I make/month. He did receive a back-pay amount from SSI, that was a year ago. He and I have now separated. He called the SSI office to tell them about the change in household status, and was told that he would have to reapply and get approved again for benefits. Is that correct? He has a phone interview with them tomorrow. Thank you for your help!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Amanda,

      If your husband was financially ineligible for benefits for twelve months, he has to file a new claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  63. Patricia Rollins says:

    My grandson that I have custody of was approved for SSI on December 30th of 2014, when well he received his first check or how long does it take to receive his letter. Social Security over the phone states it could be another 3 months is this true. He is 8 years old and has autism along with R.E.L.D ADHD we was denied in Georgia and moved back to NJ and the school here said we need to reapply and did so on Nov 6, 2014 but what is the hold up. With me not work I had to stop all of his OT, PT Aqua therapy that was paid out of my pocket and now it seems as though once approved it should all be be completed at the same time.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Patricia,

      The medical decision, whether approval or denial, takes from two to five months. There is typically a lag time of from one to two months to get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits started after approval. The large volume of claims and insufficient numbers of employee accounts for the delays.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  64. maggie raya says:

    My 7 yo got approved for SSI around the 3rd November 2013. The worker handling my daughters case said I would be receiving an award letter in 8 to 10 days but I have not received anything. I called and ask about the award letter someone said she will get her benefits for this month and there was two checks for her one for $2310.00 and one for $618 I have not received anything or the award letter. I tried contacting the worker but I haven’t heard back from her? When will be the date it will be sent ( the person on the phone did mention nothing was sent yet),??
    Thanks in advance

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Maggie,

      I assume that you meant your daughter’s SSI was approved in November 2013. If you haven’t received a benefit check yet, I recommend call the office again to ask what has to be done to release the payment. Perhaps that will prompt completion of the action. I can’t predict when the benefits will actually be sent. Backlogs vary from office to office.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  65. Kalsey says:

    Hello, i applied for ssi for my son on nov14 2014 i gave ssa evrything they asked for medications school reports n medical. They then sent me to an ssi psych in which they payed for. I wanna know how long will a decision will b made as of today is 1-7-14 . And if im approved will i get backpay for the waiting process? thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kalsey,

      Claim processing usually takes from two to five months. If your son is approved, benefits will be gin to accrue with December 2014. I am removing your email address from your post to protect your privacy.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  66. Dave says:

    My wife was approved for disability 4 months ago. We also have 6 children. Somehow each child only gets $2 a month in benefits. Is this normal or is there some kind of mistake.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dave,

      I suggest that your wife call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 and ask the amount of her primary insurance amount (PIA) and her family maximum benefit. The difference between the two is the total amount payable to her children. Each child would receive one-sixth of the difference. If they are not getting an amount equal to the difference, it could be because your wife’s Social Security Disability is subject to workers compensation offset or government pension offset, which is applied first to dependent benefits. If neither of those situations apply and the children are getting less than the difference between the family maximum and the PIA, your wife should contact Social Security for an explanation or correction.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  67. eileen says:

    hi i am confused about my claim i applied for both ssi ssdi Oct 2013 and in Feb 2014 i was denied but i then went back in and repplied in March 2014 and now my claim is pending in medical review dept so i get that but what i don’t understand and my question is if i am approved how far back do they pay meaning will it go to the first original date of Oct 2013 or is it when i applied again second time of March 2014 ? that’s what i need an answer too ty very much for your time.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Eileen,

      If you appealed the February 2014 denial and did not file a new claim, benefits would be paid based on the October 2013 claim. If instead you really filed new claims and did not appeal, benefits would be paid based on the March 2014 application date. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits begin with the month following the month of application unless you applied on the first in which case they would begin the month of the application. Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits begin the later of twelve months before the month of application or the sixth full calendar month of disability.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  68. Markus says:

    I am currently receiving SSI. If my spouse (we are in a same sex marriage since 2008 and I reported that when I was approved for my SSI last year that covered benefits from 2012) receives $1250 in SSDI benefits, will that affect my SSI benefit? It has been very confusing for me as I know my SSI will not affect his SSDI benefit.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Markus,

      Your spouse’s benefits may cause you to be financially eligible for a federal SSI payment if you were legally married in a state that recognizes same-sex marriages. If the state you live in offers an SSI state supplement that allows higher income levels for payment, you might be eligible for a small state supplement. One reason I say “may” is that federal regulations may have changed on this issue after 2012 and it may be that before those changes, your spouse’s income may not be counted or it may be that because you filed before changes in law and regulations, his benefits will not count.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  69. melissa says:

    Ok also I’m the same person about the Dec 8 2014 approval since I have no income is ssa going to have me produce my boyfriends income who is the father of our 12 month old. If so how does that apply to me? How could it affect how they determine my monthly benefit. The rent including utility cost for all three of us is 500.00. I plan on paying my share of the rent as soon as I get my benefits. So the main concern is when I go to the interview are they going to consider his income my income. We are not married.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Melissa,

      Please see my previous reply. Your boyfriend’s income will not be considered in determining your eligibility.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  70. Joline GKG says:

    First off, you are wonderful!
    Secondly, I need clarification. My son, 18, intellectually disabled, was approved for SSI in the amount of $488.67 beginning in January, a few cents less now. It says $244.33 was counted as value for food and shelter, but I made it clear that my son and I had an arrangement that he would be paying room and board. Do they just ignore that and assume he is living here for free because he is my son? To be blunt, he is adopted and until he turned 18 I received an adoption subsidy of $700 plus a month. I had hoped SSI would cover at least a little more than it apparently will. It has been hard to make ends meet without that subsidy. Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Joline,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) eligibility is determined on a month by month basis based on income (cash and in-kind) received in that month. If, when your son receives his back pay, he starts to pay you market rate for room and board or pays his share of shelter and food expenses, his benefit will increase two months later. His share is total shelter and food divided by the number of people in the household

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  71. melissa says:

    I meant 2012 was the date I applied but anyways how will they determine my ssi payment from that situation?

  72. melissa says:

    I just got approved for ssi. It was a bench decision. My court hearing was Dec 8. 2014. The date I applied was Oct of 2013. I was wondering about my situation and how they would determine my monthly payment. Ok the situation is I have no income but I get food stamp I pay for my own food but I’m expected to pay rent as soon as I have any kind of income. I currently live with my boyfriend who is the father of our 12 month old daughter. The rent is 500.00 a month including utility cost.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Melissa,

      If you were approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and the rent and utilities for all three of you is $500, your monthly benefit will likely be reduced by $160 because you are not paying your share of the rent and utilities and your payment amount will be $561. If your share is $500, your SSI benefit will be $481. If you start paying your share (one-third) when you start getting benefits, then your benefit will go up to $721. If you were approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI), your living arrangement will not affect your SSDI.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  73. Leslie Alford says:

    I recieved my approval letter for my SSI disability on 11/15/14.
    When do you think I will recieve my 1st check?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Leslie,

      It can take a couple weeks to a couple months to get benefits started. I suggest that you go to or call Social Security with your medical approval letter and request an appointment for the required review of your income and assets since the date of your application.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  74. lisa says:

    i receive ssi and i babysat for my daugther in 2012. she would pay me 120 monthly. she reported this on her income tax in 2012 with my social. will i get penalized for this?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      You need to report your earnings to the Social Security Administration right away. If you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the first $65 of work earnings ($85 if you have no income other than work and SSI) does not affect your benefit. Half of the remaining amount counts. This means that in 2012 your SSI should have been reduced by either $27.50 or $17.50 per month. When you make the report, you can request collection of the overpayment in monthly installments withheld from your ongoing checks.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  75. MoBro says:

    To piggy back on that first post, will that Aflac short term dissability count against me?…..It started in April the day of my accident and ran out in Sept of this year a 160 days later, I got a letter stating that it’s no longer in play since I’ve used up my alloted assistance so for the months of Oct, Nov and now Dec of this year I’ve had no monetary income ( thank god that when I was receiving my Aflac checks I was paying my rent both on time and a month ahead so Junes check paid June/July rent….Julys check paid Aug/Sept and I didn’t get another one till Sept and that paid Sept/Oct rent my parents paid Nov and I still owe for current Dec) …I’m hoping after this weds non medical interview I can get some type of $$$ to pay Dec rent and bills!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear MoBro,

      Please see my response to your prior post. Private disability insurance does not affect Social Security. Social Security Disability (SSD) can affect private insurance if they overlap, but SSD starts to accrue in the sixth full calendar month of disability–in your case October–so you do not have an overlap. You will not receive income immediately. It can take a week to a month or more to get the SSI started, depending on the office workload. Social Security usually takes longer.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  76. MoBro says:

    Good morning Kay…..Back in April of this year I was involved in a bad car accident that left me severly disabled ( I was on my way to work)….I applied for social security in June via online and got a call from a local office rep who did a phone interview with me and determined that at that time I didn’t qualify for SSI but more so SSDI because I’ve worked all my life including right up to the day of the accident….While not working I took advantaged of my Aflac Short Term Dissability that helped to pay my rent/food/bills but that was only for 160 days and ran out in Sept….I signed up for food stamps in Oct and got them….I found out on Nov 24 I was approved I was approved for SSDI ( cause I had enough credits ) and my file made it past the quality review as well and was sent to my local office for final processing….I got my letter saying I was approved SSI and have a meeting this weds Dec 10th and need to bring in my bank statements, housing allowance info, date of birth and insurance policies info if I have any…..I’m confused I guess because I applied and was approved ( so my dds adjuster told me ) for SSDi now I get a letter that said SSI?…….More importantly when I went on the social security web site to initiate my application there was a part that read based on my work history…had I become disabled right now my monthly SSDI payments would be $1,310 per month and SSI pays no where nears that? Help me understand please?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear MoBro,

      While you were getting Aflac benefits you likely were not eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Depending on the amount of your assets, you may qualify for SSI for months after your private insurance ended. If so, the advantage would be that SSI payments usually get started faster than Social Security. If you are eligible and choose to receive SSI, your Social Security back pay for the months that you receive SSI will be reduced by the amount of SSI you receive. I suggest attending the appointment and review the options with the claims representative.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  77. Kelly Fenner says:

    I became disabled in March 2011. My case has not been easy because I’m only 46 years old. However, I do have all the medical records from my MRI’s, Myleogram, nerve conduction test ect. My doctors have listed my spinal injury in my neck as severe. I am currently seeing a pain management doctor and I’m on medication, plus I received shots, but they each have offered little relief. My neurosurgeon stated that I have the neck of a 70 yr old and surgery would be of no benefit.
    With the help of an attorney, I have been denied at all levels and I’m currently just started the proceedings for a Civil Action suit in Federal Court.
    I’ve been told I can apply a brand new case and have my disability onset date changed to April 18, 2014. The day after I was denied by an ALJ. Can I do this? And if so, how will my SSD and SSI be calculated? During what dates would I receive back pay if say, I won my new case in April 2015?( I’m trying to allow plenty of time because I have been waiting in the first case for so long, I know its a slow process, no matter how you look at it.) I’m just trying to figure out what to tell everyone I owe money to. I’m living bare bones right now and I have borrowed a lot of money from friends and family. My social security website states that I would get 352.00 a month based on my work credits.I guess I need to know what back pay would be and when it would start. Its hard for me to understand things so please keep it simple. Thank you in advance for reading this and taking the time to help.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kelly,

      If you file a new claim and claim a disability onset date of April 18, 2014 and were approved with that date of disability, your benefits would begin to accrue October 2014. Your monthly Social Security benefit would calculated be the same as it would if you were approved on the now pending claim.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  78. C.Lock says:

    I was recently hospitalized and diagnosed with Stiff Person Syndrome. Is this a legitimate disability? I have worked two jobs for a year and a half and recently quit one and will be evaluated this Monday on the other. i currently live with one my children’s mother and pay rent plus child support. How will my current living situation affect my ssi/ssdi if i am approved?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear C.,

      If you are eligible for Social Security Disability (SSD), your living arrangements will have no bearing on benefits. If you are approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and are either paying market-rate rent for a room or are sharing expenses by paying one third of food (or buy food separately), rent, and utilities (excluding phone and cable), SSI benefits will not be affected. Stiff Person Syndrome is a legitimate diagnosis. Whether or not you are disabled by your condition depends on how severely it is affecting your ability to work. If you are now earning less than $1,070 gross per month ($1,090 in 2015), you can apply for benefits while working.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  79. Dwane says:

    Hello,
    How is SSA used in calculating the SSI grant?
    second question is a mother is living with her 25 year old son does his income affect her SSI grant?

    Thank you =0)

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dwane,

      A child’s income does not affect a parent’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim. If your mother has no income other than Social Security benefits, all but $20 of her Social Security will be used in calculation of SSI benefits. This means that to be eligible for federal SSI, she must have Social Security below $741 ($753 in 2015). Some states have an SSI state supplement that allow slightly higher income.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  80. Anthony says:

    Hello I had a question. My mother has received her back pay in installments every 6 months. March 2nd she received her latest one and a letter followed that said her next payment would be 9 months from her last one, well it’s the 9 month mark and nothing yet. Do you know what day it’s paid on the 9th month?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Anthony,

      Installment payments are paid at varying times during the month; if your mother doesn’t receive the payment by the end of December, she should follow up with Social Security. Just a note that I have not heard of the payments being nine months apart. She does have nine months before the back pay counts toward the resource limit.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  81. Noel P. says:

    I am on anti depressants and a mood stabilizer called Latuda. I am not working and have not been working for a while now because of my depression and mood swings, do you think I will be able to get an SSI check for this? I am with a Mental Health Agency doing thrapy, recieving my meds, and also have a case manager. Being with this agency do you think that will help me get approved for a SSI check? When it comes to just a mental disability will they turn me down?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Noel,

      The only way to find out if you are eligible is to file a claim. The fact that you are getting treatment for your mental illness is helpful because you have documentation of your condition and how it responds or does not respond to treatment.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  82. Fabi says:

    12/1/14
    Hi please I need your help I just got my ssdi approval wish is $720.00
    It does not cover the rent and the bills and food my two daughters lives with me I m in welfare already I did talk to the worker she said when I got my check I have to bring it over so she can do the budgets
    please how much she is going to give me, my rent is 1,000.00 my bills around 100.00 a month and I have to pay food for me and my kids ,they are full time school

  83. Tracy says:

    Hi,my daughter who is 35 was recently approved for ssi in oct.We did the office visit in nov and signed all necessary papers for electronic deposit and household expenses .My question is when should she expect her first check. Only info I got was that her ATM card would take at least 2wks and first payment would be a check. Thank you in advance. Tracy

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tracy,

      How soon your daughter gets payment will depend on how fast the claims representative processes and sets up the information in the computer system. This in turn depends on workloads in the office. If no payment is received in a month, try politely asking what actions are still needed to get the payment out.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  84. Edwin Troche says:

    I’m approved but SSI has to deduct wagdes how long untill I receive first payment of 721 I got approved on the 24 for November 2014 will I get my first check of 721 on the first

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Edwin,

      By now you likely know that you will not receive a payment on December 1. If you have wage deductions (countable wages above the excluded amount) your earnings will result in your getting less than $721. If you have stopped working, your benefit will increase two months after the month in which you were last paid wages.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  85. Kay says:

    Hi,
    I have a complicated situation. My twin children are on ssi. Their father and I have decided to purchase and live in the home together. Their ssi will be reduced, which I already talked to their ssi worker about and he gave me an estimate of change. My dilemma is that mortgage company wants that estimate in writing from ssa. Unfortunately my kids worker is out of town for a week and everyone in the local office said can’t help me. I need this letter to finish the process of our loan. Any suggestions would be great

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kay,

      Unfortunately, I don’t have any suggestions. Just be in the office when it opens on the day that she returns to ask for the written estimate. Emphasize that you understand it is just an estimate and that the actual amount could be a bit different; you just need it for the mortgage loan.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      Si

  86. Renee says:

    I am disabled and applied for SSD several years back. I got denied due to being short about a month of points. My disability is chronic and I will never be able to work again. I’m a single adult with no help financially. My rent is $600 a month and I was receiving help from an ex-boyfriend until October 2013. Since then I have gave my landlord the run around hoping to buy some time but am now out of time. I applied for SSI back in April and just got approved, I only found out about SSI in the beginning of this year. The payment they calculated for me is 480.00 a month. I receive no income and haven’t since 2007 and my rent is $600. I’m about to be disabled and homeless. Why would I not receive the maximum of $721.00 if I’m a single adult with no income, no assests, no help, nothing. Please help!!! I can’t live on the street in my condition.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Renee,

      If you live alone, your benefit may have been reduced for free rent. If you owe a lot of back rent, get a statement from the landlord on the amount that is owed and for which months. Then appeal the amount and present the letter from the landlord along with any past-due rent notices you have gotten. Also, in a separate request, ask for a hardship early release of back pay (all in one payment instead of installments) based on your needing to catch up your rent so you won’t be evicted.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  87. Emily says:

    I have a question…. i went for my hearing 10/15/14 called 10/29/14 and it was in decision writing, today i called and my attorney looked on what ever site they have access to and it showed it was closed 11/20/14. That was last thurday. My attorney told me the day of my hearing the judge was going to give a favorable decision. For thurday when showed closed how long until i receive my letter and when might payment begin if infact its a favorable decision. Is there any hope it will be before the end of the year? They dont have my banking information and ive heard of people having money in their account befote receiveing their letter

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Emily,

      If the decision is a denial, you should have the letter within about a week. If it is an approval, it could be a month. Once you get the letter, if you are approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI), take the approval letter to Social Security and provide the banking information. If you are medically approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), when you get the letter, call 1-800-772-1213 for an appointment to update your financial information. It can take from a couple weeks to a couple months to get benefits started after you get the letter, depending on the type of benefit your are eligible for and workloads in your area.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  88. Kim says:

    Hello! I received my approval letter yesterday for my SSI/Disability I have been fighting for since 07. My husband already receives SSI/Disability, and our two children each receive a check monthly. I know there is some sort of limit to the amount of money a married couple can receive, my question is, do the kids’ checks count towards that limit, or are their checks not counted towards the limit? Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kim,

      The children’s income is not counted as the parents’ income, but it does reduce or eliminate the amount of the parents’ income that is allotted for the support of the children, when then is not counted against the parents’ SSI income limit.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  89. hello123 says:

    hello key,

    i live in texas. my earned income is 1200 a month. I have 3 children and 1 of them is eligible for supplemental social security. He gets 720 a month right now he is 12 years old. Now i just got married and my husbands earned income is 2500 we both have no unearned income from other sources. my question is when we start living together will my son still qualify for ssi? if so how much? we have no other railroad funds or pensions or burial funds or insurance. our rent is $1000, only have 1 home we are gonna live in and how does 2 vehicles count in resources if we both use them. one of the vehicles i know will prolly be exempt because we use it for work but the other one is a older car market value prolly about 4000.

    thankyou

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Hello123,

      You may be able to get an exemption on the second car if you can show that you and your husband have to have two cars for you both to get to work. The second might be excludable as income-producing property. As far as income goes, if your combined gross income is $3,700 and your children don’t have income, your son would still be eligible for SSI when you and your husband start to live together. You can calculate the amount he would be eligible for by following the calculation example in the article “What are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect an SSI Application for Children” under the SSI tab on this website.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  90. Rochelle Murrell says:

    My son was approved for disability. We are living with my grandfather who is receiving ssi. We will begin to pay 450 dollars a month for our shelter expenses. I know his disability payment will be increased, but will my grandfather ssi be decreased?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rochelle,

      If the $450 your son pays to your grandfather does not exceed your son’s share of household expenses, his contribution should not affect your grandfather’s benefit.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  91. rochelle says:

    Can ssi call you by phone in say that you have been approved for ssi

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Rochelle,

      Yes, sometimes after you have been medically approved, a representative of the Social Security Administration (SSA) will call and tell you that you have been medically approved and conduct a phone interview with you to update information including financial information if you applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). If you got what seemed like a suspicious call, contact your local office and double check that the call came from them before giving out information

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  92. tardrec says:

    Hi..my daughter was approved for ssi on nov 3rd and i provided all my financial paperwork on nov 10th. Im confused to how they will calculate her payment. They are going back to june and i was employed in june july and half of august. Do ssi count unemployment as countable income? I know for the month of july i had made 2500 but 750 of it was unearned income. Im just trying to figure out what is most i can make with me and three kids in the home?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tardrec,

      Both earned and unearned income are considered in determining your daughter’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment amount. More exclusions (income not counted) are applied to earned income than unearned income. You can visit the article “What Are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect a Child’s Application for SSI?” under the SSI tab on the top navigation bar of this website (www.disabilityadvisor.com) for a discussion of the formula used to calculate benefits and an example calculation.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  93. Leann says:

    I have a question….my son who is 5 receives SSI. When we first started recieving the benefits i was told that the snaps office is not allowed to count my son’s ssi as income. At first they didn’t but now they do. I just want to know if things have changed and their allowed to. I’m really struggling right now and i just want to know are they allowed to? He started recieving benefits back in 2010. Yes i do work but when they count the ssi it goes over their guidelines for my income limit and i get denied.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Leann,

      I suggest that you ask the SNAPS office to show you the regulation change that now makes Supplemental Security Income (SSI) countable income.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  94. candy says:

    If I was approve my the judy to get ssdi why I want to the offices and there told me I was getting both why im lost

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Candy,

      Apparently you have been approved for both Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Just provide everything you are asked to submit and be prepared to wait a while for benefits to start. Also, each time you don’t understand something, ask right at that time for more explanation from the Social Security representative.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  95. angela troche says:

    Hello Kay,
    My child was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and i applied on Oct. 3 for SSI. I heard that people with that condition get approved instantly, but they didn’t mention nothing to me at the SSA office. I’m waiting on the approval letter, and yesterday Nov.1st i received a letter from food stamps that my benefits we’re being reduced in the month of December from 497 to 275 because of a SSI income… ??? Can ther reduce money even though I’m not receiving that income yet? Or this means that very soon i will be getting the approval letter and check? Thank you!

  96. Hodeaner Woodruff says:

    Kay,

    My husband is receiving SSI. Of course, his SSI Monthly Income is based on how much I receive as a Spouse working in the household. That I have no problem with. The concern or question I always have a hard time understanding is when I have three pay periods in a month.
    Of course, my spouse will not receive an SSI check regarding that month of my three pay periods. For example I had three pay periods for August 2014 which meant that my spouse did not receive a SSI check for October 2014. Is that it works? June is for August; July is for September; August is for October and so and so on?
    Just trying to grasp the flow of which months determine how much my spouse receives each month.

    Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Hodeaner,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is paid in the month for which the benefit is due. As long as your husband is continuously eligible for SSI, your income in one month counts two months later unless the income makes him completely ineligible. After a month of ineligibility, your income counts in the month it is received and the following two months. So, if you are paid an extra check every six months, it would go like this:
      October (3 paychecks): no SSI
      November, December, January: SSI calculated based on November income.
      February SSI: calculated based on December income
      March SSI: based on January income
      April (3 paychecks): No SSI
      May: the cycle shown above starts over.

      If you get an extra paycheck every three months, then:
      October (3 paychecks): no SSI
      November, December SSI: calculated based on November income.
      January (3 paychecks): No SSI
      February and March SSI: based on February income
      and so on.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  97. Latoya says:

    Hey Kay my son was approved in july 2014 for ssi benefits and i had to bring back paperwork about my income and i did, he still haven’t receive anything or no information. my question is how long do it take for them to issue out payments? every time i call the local office they keep giving me the run around is there anyone else i could talk to about this situation.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Latoya,

      Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments are authorized in your local Social Security office. You could go to the office and ask to speak to a supervisor and ask the supervisor to look into your claim because you submitted the last information needed for the SSI claim three months earlier.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  98. JC says:

    Hello Kay! Thank you for your valuable information. You’re wonderful!
    Please excuse my ignorance. I would ask my local office but they seem swamped.

    I applied for SSI on behalf of my son on June 2014. (“As of June 2014 he met all of the eligibility rules) He was approved in September (That’s when I got the confirmation letter). I’m confused about what month of my income counts toward his monthly payment.

    He received back pay from July-September. The letter says, “This payment covers July-September.” Was his first payment included in the backpay? Would the payment received on October 1 be based on my income from August?
    The months seem weird to me as my income fluctuates and in August I had 3 pay stubs to turn in. The Oct 1 payment was much larger than I anticipated and only today (10-2) I reported wages for September and have already received notice of what to expect to receive for November.

    If any of this makes sense to you, I would appreciate your decoding. I can give more information as needed.

    • JC says:

      Also, please excuse grammar mistakes.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear JC,

      Income for calculating Supplemental Security Income is counted as follows: Income is always counted when received. Income received in the first month of eligibility counts for the first, second and third months. After that income received counts two months later. (This is done to avoid overpayments. If you report your income on time and it’s below the limit, your child will be paid correctly.) This means that your July income determined your son’s payment in July, August, and September. Your August income determined the October payment and your September income determinesthe November payment. If you ever have a month in which your income makes your son ineligible, then the pattern starts over and the income you receive in the first month he is again eligible will count for three months. Example: Your earnings exceed the limit for payment in February but drops below the limit again in March. This would mean your son would be ineligible and overpaid for February and your March income would determine his payment amount for March, April, and May.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • JC says:

        Okay! This is very confusing to me. Being new to the system they allowed me to turn in paystubs for August in September. Could that cause overpayment in October? If so, how to correct that?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear JC,

          Depending on the timing of your paydays, some months you would have to turn in the pay stubs the following month. It’s best to turn them in as early as possible so that they can be processed in time to produce accurate payments every month.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  99. Paul says:

    Hi, thank you for your responses and wealth of information. I think I know this answer, but am hopeful you can help. Our daughter who is 18 and is disabled, was approved for ssi a few weeks ago. She lives with us, a total of 5 of us in the household. Today we were told they only considered our mortgage and will receive $480. As I understand it, the mortgage, food and utilities (minus phone/cable) are to be included and in our case divided by 5, would that be correct? Our totals for all of that are around $3400 putting the 1/5th amount around 670…we also were told by a lawyer who is doing our special needs trust, that if you fall between the $480-$721 you should go to the $721 amount.

    Any thoughts or suggestions, thank you in advance.
    Paul

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Paul,

      If you daughter eats with the family and does not purchase food separately and her share is $670, then the amount she gets depends on how much she is paying toward that share. For example, if she were paying $500, then the maximum SSI of $721 would be reduce by $170, which is the value of the housing and food subsidy you are giving her. If she is paying nothing, then she would be receiving $670 free food and shelter; however the government caps the reduction at one third of the maximum. This means that the reduction in 2014 is $240 and the amount payable is $481. If, when your daughter starts to get benefits, she uses her back pay to pay her share, after two months of paying her share, her benefit will increase to $721.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  100. frustrated says:

    She’s also on 9 medications a day for her mental health!

  101. tanya says:

    My daugher was diagnosed with bipolar with psychosis features, insomnia, adhd, disruptive behavior. I’ve been denied 4 times and went to v for appeal, since then I actually reapplied bc I had new evidence to intruduce, she’s now 8 and was hospitalized in the psychiatric ward twice, has had lithium intoxicaton and hospitalized for that and also has been placed in a special behavioral school! We are a 5 family with one income, approximately 27,000 a year! My rent is 1,600 alone if I get approved what do u think I will get?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Tanya,

      If the family income is work earnings, I estimate that your daughter’s benefit would be between three and four hundred dollars a month.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  102. Chell says:

    My brother applied for Disability back in Nov 2012. He was denied March 2013. We hired a attorney and they filed a appeal March 2013. He just received a letter from his hearing that he won his case. My question is my brother has been living in our parents home both parents are now deceased and the house is now in foreclosure. My brother continues to live there until the foreclosures is done because he has no money to go anywhere else. He refuses to live with me because I have 5 kids and he doesn’t want to be a burden. He gets monthly SNAP and he goes over friends house to warm food and shower. Will he get the full $721 at first and when it’s time for him to move and he lives with someone else will his payments be decreased. I’m trying to see if I should start taking him to look for rooms or not but want to make sure he will be able to pay rooming fees once he starts getting check.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Chell,

      If your brother has been approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI), his living arrangement will not affect the amount of his benefit. If he has been approved for Supplemental Security Income payment (SSI), then living arrangements can affect payment amount.

      For SSI your brother might be considered to essentially be homeless given he is living in a house without utilities. It is possible that the shelter has no market value given that it has no utilities. I suggest providing proof of the his parents dates of death and proof that the house is in foreclosure and without services. Even if Social Security determines that his SSI has to be reduced for free shelter, he will have retroactive benefits that should cover his being able to rent an apartment or rooms using the back pay. Once he has paid for his own shelter for two months, the monthly SSI will go up.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  103. Anthony says:

    Hi. I am 25 going on 26 in October. I was born Epilepric and had seizures all my life, but when i turned 18 I was able to work a couple of jobs here and there until i turned 20 my seizures have gotton worse. I would get them at work and at home. Until one day at work July of 2012 i got a seizure and woke up in the hospital. My doctor took me off of work every 3 months to see if i get better with medication and i was starting to get unemployment for one year. Then they stopped paying me in August 2014. I applied for SSI a week ago. Would all my years affect my SSI and i have a 2 year old son, and my wife is working 2 jobs. With my unemployment money which is $740 a month. I had to pay $500 rent plus $100 on cell phone bill and what ever i have left goes to food. My wife pays for our sons stuff also the babysitters. Would i get approved and or recive money.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Anthony,

      If you have worked enough to be insured for Social Security and your condition is disabling as defined by Social Security law, you will be approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI). Because of your limited work history, your SSDI benefit, if you are approved, may not be high enough to also pay dependent benefits for your son or wife. If you have enough work, you may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The maximum federal SSI benefit is $721 and SSI does not pay dependent benefits.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  104. Anndrea says:

    My fiance has never worked because of his disability. He was just recently approved by disability judge. If hes never worked how do they find out what his benefits will be.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Anndrea,

      Apparently your fiance has been approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability. SSI benefits are determined on a month-by-month basis. The maximum federal SSI benefit is currently $721 and actual benefits are based on the income your fiance has including the value of any free housing or food he is receiving (excluding government-subsidized housing and food stamps).

      Sincerely,
      Kay

      • Nichole Noel says:

        Dear Kay Derochie
        To whom should someone go other than Social Security or Social Services to get and pay for their advise on how to manage your budget to maximize your application benefits. Need resources to navigate and calculate an honest formula
        that we won’t fall through the cracks and make mistakes that will decrease the benefits.Are their public accountants that specialize in disability claims benefits?
        Nichole June 25, 2015

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Nichole,

          Some financial planners might specialize in management of benefits. Some of those might be certified public accountants (CPAs).

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  105. Ravyn says:

    I was recently approved on ssi followed by ssdi been fighting it since Feb 2012. Im assuming that because of the credits from working in the past they said approved but only through March 2014. Question is that because thats all they approved me for feb 2012 to mar 2014 and that i ran out of work credit? Also I have a date set to go into the local office here and to bring the following which was one thing a trusted family member or trusted friend to be my payee. Now the letter said i might have some problems managing my money so that it is recommended I have a payee, I am 43 am I obligated to that or not since it says recommended and not required?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Ravyn,

      You only have to be insured on the date you became disabled. If the determination is that your benefits will stop with the March 2014 payment, it means that it has been determined that you have not been disabled since that date. If you disagree, you have the right to appeal the termination of benefits. You must appeal within sixty days.

      You can appeal having a payee. If you believe that you are capable of handling your own funds and have the judgment to pay for necessities such as housing and food before other things, I suggest that you discuss this with your doctor. If you doctor agrees, take a letter from him with you to Social Security. They will perhaps make direct payment to you.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  106. Kerri says:

    Sorry I keep hitting the wrong button. We pay $350 in rent and buy our own food, supplies as well as have a van that we own. I was getting $1200 a month in unemployment but that stopped right when my husband got a job and he brings in about $1100 a month. I have my in person interview next week and want to know what exactly I needed to bring in and does my husband make too much for us to qualify financially?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kerri,

      I think that part of your inquiry may be in another comment that you accidentally deleted. I assume from this comment that you are inquiring about the possibility of your getting supplemental Security Income. Based the limited information you provided, it appears you could qualify for a reduced amount of SSI during the months that you were not getting unemployment and your husband was working. Take proof of your rent payment and, if you have minor children in the household, information about any income they may have. If anyone other than you, your husband, and your minor children live at your house, you will be asked about your other shelter and food expenses. Also take copies of your bank statements going back to when you applied, life insurance policies and proof of any other assets.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  107. Kerri says:

    Of our own food, supplies and have our t

  108. Kerri says:

    We have six children (one is an adult over 18 who does not reside with is). Two of our children have been deemed medically eligible to receive SSI payments last week. I worked up until February when I lost my job and applied. We had to move in with my husbands parents and pay $350 a month plus we buy all

  109. Kendra T says:

    I receive SSDI, my 2 kids draw on my record as well as my husband as he was unemployed. My one child gets SSI, $458. Husband is just now picking up a job, so now there will be earned income. It’s only part time though. I do know I have to report these changes, but I’m waiting until I get his first check to be able to show them. Husband will be doing 20 hours/wk at $10/hr. I am concerned as to if my child that gets SSI, will she completely lose her SSI now because my husband will get approximately $800/mo in income? I don’t know how their calculations work, but any information you can provide? No other situation has changed.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kendra,

      First, your husband’s projected earnings are not high enough to affect his Social Security dependent benefits. With regard to your child’s SSI, part of his earnings will be excluded as a work incentive. Based on the figures you provided, a small amount may also be excluded to supplement his and your non-disabled child’s Social Security. You can find a sample calculation in the article “What are Deemed Income and Resources and How Do They Affect an SSI Application for Children?” under the SSI tab on the navigation bar of this website.

      Sincerely,
      Kay

  110. Lori says:

    Hi Kay!
    Thank you so much for all of this information!
    I have a couple questions. I had my hearing last week for SSI and SSDI. My atty feels very confident that I won my case, but my first concern is that SSI is going to hold up my SSDI back pay longer, which of course will be the largest sum, and I am in dire need of income.

    As I understand it, and correct me if I am wrong… since I applied near the end of Oct. 2012, and we made my onset date as Sept. 2012, I would technically only be eligible for 3 months of SSI, correct?

    I have had no earned income since Aug. 2012, the only way I have survived is by donations by friends and family and they have had fundraisers for me during this time. I am single, and live alone, so there is no other source of money in my home. My 2nd concern is how do I prove this to SSI? Of course they know I haven’t worked, but I have a mortgage and utilities to pay and I honestly don’t remember what was paid during those months with what was donated to me because I’ve juggled cut off notices for almost 2 yrs now!

    I’m soooo tired of the fight and hassle of everything and upon my approval, I would just like to get a payment because now my home is about to go into foreclosure and again have all cut off notices and all of my resources from family/friends are exhausted. I even inquired about waiving my SSI to speed up the SSI but my atty didn’t like that idea, so I called SSI locally and they really wouldn’t answer any questions either. So I’m at a loss. :(

    What do you think about all of this?

    Thank you!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lori,

      There are many things to consider before deciding to withdraw your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim. Potentially you could be eligible for SSI that would not reduce Social Security back pay for five months before Social Security starts. Those months are October 2012 through February 2013. If people were giving you money for that period and you don’t know how much or from whom, you would likely be denied benefits for those months. If they were paying your mortgage and utilities directly and not giving you any cash and you were getting food stamps, then Social Security would reduce SSI for those months by one-third. SSI that is paid for months after that–up until Social Security gets paid–will cause a reduction in your Social Security back pay.

      You have the right to withdraw your application for SSI; however, I would not do so until you are medically approved by the judge because you want to know for sure that you have also been medically approved for Social Security Disability (SSDI) (became disabled while insured for benefits) before you withdraw your SSI. Once you have the judge’s approval letter for SSDI, you can take the letter and a written statement withdrawing the SSI application. All that said, it might not get money to you sooner. It could speed up the Social Security faster than if you had SSI also; but if you keep the SSI claim open, you might get the SSI money faster than a Social Security-only claim because SSI benefits are authorized locally. Another consideration is if you can gather the information together about who helped you financially and you are financially eligible for SSI, SSI is not taxable and Social Security is partially taxable if your yearly income is over $25,000.

      While you wait for your hearing decision, I suggest that you contact your mortgage holder and tell them that you have finally had your hearing and your attorney thinks it went well. Tell them you should have a decision in about two months and that, if approved, you will be getting back pay to cover the mortgage arrears. Perhaps they will hold off on the foreclosure. Then when you get the approval letter, go back to them with it to prove you will have money coming in and ask for another extension until you get benefits started. If you don’t have a decision in two months, go back and tell them you are still waiting. Check with the hearing office first to see if the letter is in the writing department and coming soon. Regarding utilities, contact social service agencies in your area to see if any have utility assistance to keep the lights and water on.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  111. kyesha says:

    After I get approved how long do I wait to receive the check in the mail

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kyesha,

      The amount of time to receive payment after approval varies greatly depending on whether you applied for Social Security Disability (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or both and on the workload in your local office. It can vary from a couple weeks to two months or more for monthly payments to start. Back pay takes longer.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  112. Janine says:

    Kay,

    Thank you for providing so much valuable help and information.

    I am a single Mom, my son is about to turn 18 very soon, so I did a little Google search to find out what to expect when he turns 18.

    What seemed to be a simple search has turned into a full days worth of research and reading comments and posts from both SSI specialists (Usually Attorney sites) and posts from people who are in a similar situation.

    My son has Down Syndrome, and requires 24 hour protective supervision because of incidences that could have caused him harm if unsupervised.

    That being said, I have read several posts of people stating that when a disabled person turns 18, unless they move out and pay rent on their own, their benefits will be decreased because of living at home.

    My son can not be expected to work, he is still a child in many areas and he needs help in doing many tasks. I still have to bathe him, prepare his food, wash his clothes, etc…He simply is not be capable of being left “anywhere” and expected to perform at a job. There are many DS people who can, but not my son.

    My question is, though, he is not capable of working, can I still use his money towards food and the mortgage, etc? If he lives here free, then it is counted against him and he would receive less money.

    Our money is budgeted, but he is very well taken care of, probably better than most kids. My son is my reason for living, I adore him. He gets new clothes and items he wants to keep him content before I get things I want…so his money is not being spent on me or only for bills.

    **Side note, after the reading I’ve done today, I am suddenly saddened as to what will happen to him if something happens to me.

    He has family, but nobody loves him or gives him the individual one on one time like I do. His older sister is very protective of him, and does love him to no end, but she is struggling to find her way in the world…His uncles, love him from a distance, never include him or take much interest in him…His grandparents love him to pieces, but they are 65, and 75 yrs old…they couldn’t care for him for as long as he would need caring for.

    This troubles me so.

    I get it that you’re not a counselor, lol, but do you have any ideas of what people do in our circumstance? I’m terrified of putting him in a home…he’s too active and adventurous, he needs to go places and do things, talk to people and be loved on and accepted. We go to church twice a week and that is one of his favorite things to do. He gets so excited to see our church friends.

    Well, thank you for your time,

    Janine

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Janine,

      I’ll respond to your financial question first. You seem to be indicating that you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for your son now. If that is the case, before he turns eighteen, you need to apply to have his benefits continued as an adult because the definition of disability is different for adults. If he does have SSI now, beginning with the month that he turns eighteen, use his funds to pay his share of shelter and food costs and his SSI will not be reduced. (His share is the cost of food and rent or mortgage and utilities excluding phone divided by the number of people in the household.

      With regard to the care of your son when you are no longer able to care for him (which will eventually happen if he outlives you), I suggest that you contact support groups and associations for families with Downs Syndrome children. There is probably a wealth of information available about resources for care and legal considerations to be sure he is cared for.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  113. wanda says:

    I live in Texas and my 6 y/o granddaughter was approved for SSI benefits. I was approved on July 3 and was told that monthly benefits is 486. She doesn’t have any other income. I have legal custody. I was told that my income does’t count since I am the grandparent. How is SSI benefits calculated. I know someone that recieves 720 month for their child. When can I expect to recieve 1st check?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Wanda,

      Your granddaughter’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) has been reduced because you are providing her with in-kind support and maintenance in the form of free shelter and possibly free food. When her SSI starts, if you start to use her SSI to pay her share of food and shelter (rent or mortgage and utilities, excluding phone and cable), her SSI can be increased. Her share is the total cost for shelter and food divided by the number of people in the household.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  114. Dave says:

    i was approved for SSI got the approval letter and all and today i did the interview over the phone she asked me about income and all that cause being i was disabled 6 years ago i have had to stay at my parents cause i couldnt afford to live on my own at the time but they only went back as far as 2012 well my moms bills only come out to like 840 a month cause she pretty much owns everything but i have had no money to pay her so im thinking this counts as the inkind help thing but now does this effect me badly cause she pay so little cause i am really wanting to get out of here and on my own and the way the lady sounded was like it was a bad thing she only paid out that much a month

    • Dave says:

      sorry forgot to mention i do pay for my own food i am on that snap program

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dave,

      The only way that “your mother’s” expenses, which I interpret to be shelter expenses, affect your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim is to determine how much in-kind help you have been getting. If there are three of you in the house, then your share is one-third. However, there is a cap on the amount of support that will be charged. If you have no other income, the least you would receive would be $480 monthly. You can use your first back pay installment to pay moving costs and to begin to pay all your own expenses. Two months later, your SSI will go up to $721 if you have no other income.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  115. Kimberly Brooks says:

    I applied for ssi on Feb 19 2014 I was approved medically June 7 and on June 27 had my interview to update info. My case worker never mentioned back pay I had to bring it up. My bf I was living with in Feb but moved out in march. She asked for proff of his income that month and proof of cash assistance had stopped in may from the state. She told me that my first check should be in the mail box by Friday. But she needed those papers to calculate my back pay. How will this affect my back pay and how long will it take. I also never got a awards letter.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kimberly,

      I would not have expected a request for verification of your boyfriend’s income because his income is not deemed available to you. The termination of your public assistance means none of your back pay for May and June will withheld to repay the state. It can take from a week or two to a couple of months to get your back pay depending upon workloads at the time. You will get an award letter after all your benefits have been calculated.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  116. Magdala says:

    Kay,
    I am a 22 years old who had a stroke due to complications related to my sickle sell disease. I have been approved for SSI one month ago. Today I received a letter from SSA telling me that I have an appointment set in a couple of days to review my case. They also ask me to bring proof of income for anyone else in my household.
    My mother does not work, my father works and makes around $27.000 a year my sister works part time as a nurse and makes around $33.000.
    Do you think those incomes combined will affect my financial eligibility?
    PS: There are four of us living in the house and mortgage and utilities are around $1.400.00 a month.(food not included)
    Thank you

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Magdala,

      Unless your application was filed before you turned eighteen, your parents’ and sister’s income does not affect your eligibility for Supplement Security Income (SSI). If they are supporting you by giving you free shelter and food, then your SSI will be reduced by one third for in-kind income. If, when your benefits start, you begin to pay your share of shelter and/or food costs, your benefit could be increased. If you were under age eighteen when you filed your application, then your parent’s income will be considered in determining your eligibility for months before your eighteenth birthday.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Magdala says:

        Hi Kay

        Thank you for taking the time to answer my question. The information you sent me were really helpful.
        Best regards

        Magdala

        • Kay Derochie says:

          You are welcome, Magdala.

          • I was approved for SSDI and SSI. Will they take my backpay for a defaulted student loan ? I have filed for forgiveness due to disability

            Thank You
            Wilma

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Wilma,

            Your benefits will not be garnished for a defaulted student loan.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

          • cierra says:

            hi my son got approved for ssi march 6th 2015 when will i start reciving his payments an his back pay i had fax over the paper work she needed

          • Kay Derochie says:

            Dear Cierra,

            It can take from a week to a month or more for the first monthly Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment to be released. Back pay will be released afterward in installments six months apart if the back pay is more than $2,199, which is the maximum amount that can be released in a single installment. The first installment should come within a month of the first monthly check.

            Sincerely,
            Kay

  117. Marsha says:

    I just found out my child has been aproved for Ssi on June 6 in I went to the office June 13 to give my bank in income information when will I see the money

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Marsha,

      Depending on the workload of the office, our son’s SSI payment will be issued anywhere within a couple weeks to a couple months.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  118. Kris says:

    Kay

    We applied for SSI for our 6 year old daughter in January 2014. Just heard back from them today and they said 120.50 for just the month of April. I am OK with it, I guess…however is it smart to appeal it? We are a one income household. And we are going to start the gluten/casein diet for her. It costs a lot. Plus all the things that we need to get her for example weighted blanket, weighted vest, and other sensory things for her. I just would like to know if I being selfish? I know it goes on income and was not expecting $1,000 but maybe something a little more than she was approved for. No back pay for my little one either.

    Thanks in advance for any advice!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kris,

      I am assuming that nothing is payable for February and March because your family income was too high. Otherwise, it would seem a couple months back pay would be due. With regard to ongoing benefits, you are right, family income determines payment amount not the cost of special needs. You might try contacting the March of Dimes or other non-profits to see if you can get some assistance in purchasing some of her medically related durable equipment.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  119. susan says:

    I have beed disabled since 2009. and in 2013 I hired a company to help me with my disabilty case over a year ago but SSI sent me my paper work directly and I did all of the leg work SSI even told me when I had to go for my medical evaluaton. Of course I was denied the first time around and I had to tell the company about it because they did not recieve the letter themselves. So they started the appeal for me but again SSI was in direct contact with me. A few months went by and desides to call the company to find out that they dropped my case because I could not afford to go to the doctor nor a car to get there. Now on my own I was approved and got the minimal amount of money and onlt 3 months of retroactive pay. What should I do about this and can I fight it? Sorry about the spelling it happens when I get upset. I am so disappointed and feel hopeless I have no one to help me at all.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Susan,

      I cannot understand the time frames or situation well enough to provide reliable guidance. It sounds as if your first claim was denied because you did not attend a consultative examination. If you did not appeal that denial and had to apply again, payment would be made based on the second application.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  120. Steve says:

    Kay,

    My question regards SSD backpay. I’ve been awarded backpay from April 2012-March 2014. $8,468. My SSD is only $355/month.
    However it’s being held for reductions. I would like to know what to expect.
    From May 2013 to August 2013 I received $480/month SSI, then September 2013 to April 2014 it was increased for rent to $721.
    My question is will they reduce my ssd payments of $355 for the 12 months I was paid SSI from my backpay. Basically cut it in half or will I have to pay back the entire SSI payments?
    Also will the lawyer fee be 25% of the backpay before, or after the reductions?
    Then finally will my future benefits be the SSD $355? Or a combination of both to maintain the $721 I’ve been getting.
    I’m sure other factors may be involved. No spouse or children and no income whatsoever.

    Cheers

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Steve,

      You will be paid Supplemental Security Income (SSI) back pay at the rate you indicated, less attorney fees. Your Social Security Disability (SSD) will be offset (reduced) by the SSI paid for overlapping months. Because your SSI was higher than your Social Security, you will not receive any SSD for May 2013 through April 2014. You should receive Social Security back pay for April 2012 through April 2013 because you did not have SSI in those months. The attorney fee should be based on the net SSD paid to you after offset. Based on your statement that your SSI is currently $721, Your ongoing income will be $355 SSD and $386 SSI for a total of $741.00. (SSI doesn’t count the first $20 of income.)

      Best regards,

      Kay

  121. Kris says:

    My fiancé was just approved for SSI. He first became disabled when he got real sick with meningitis in December 2012. In August 2013 he underwent brain surgery then a second brain surgery in Sept 2013 and in between has had several other medical problems that are in the process of treatment. He applied for Social Security in December 2013 and we just found out he got approved but they are only paying back to December 2013. He was told you have to be disabled for AT LEAST a year to be eligible. He has been disabled for longer than a year and they are only paying him for 5 months worth? And they calculated an estimate of him getting 700-800 a month based on what he has paid into Social Security and now that he is approved, they said he is only getting 480 a month. This just doesn’t seem right. We reside in WV. Is there a way to file for disagreement or is there anything we can do to fight this?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kris,

      I suggest that your fiance contact Social Security for an explanation of which benefits he will be getting–Social Security Disability (SSD) based on his earnings record or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) which is a public assistance program for disabled persons with little or no income and few assets, or both. The “$480″ figure sounds like the SSI payment amount for a person who is living with someone else and receiving free shelter and/or food. It is possible that he will be receiving that amount until his Social Security is paid at a higher rate. If he was insured for Social Security (had enough work credits) when he became disabled, then he may yet receive SSD in the quoted higher monthly amount.

      As far as back pay goes, SSI is paid only from the month after the date of application (January 2014). SSD begins to accrue the later of the sixth full calendar month after Social Security determines disability began or twelve months before application. In your fiance’s case, if Social Security found him disabled in December 2012, then his benefits would begin to accrue in June 2013.

      Best regards,

      Kay

  122. Bree Blanco says:

    Hello I have a question. I just found out my son has autism. Im still in the process of finishing his iep because I want to check out his schools first so we haven’t close it yet. I receive calworks for him and my other 2 kids. I’m a full time student, I’m not employed and their father got deported one year ago. Can my son receive ssi?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Bree,

      Whether or not your son will qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability benefits will depend on how severely limited he is. I suggest that you file the application and get a formal decision. No payments are made for periods before the date of an SSI application, so I recommend getting the claim started as promptly as possbile to avoid possible loss of benefits. To support the claim, provide all medical and psychological evaluations, school evaluations, and instructional plans for your son.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  123. lisa says:

    Today is May 1st 2014vi have phone intetview to discuss income resources and living arrangements for my ssi how long after this will I receive benefits?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Lisa,

      If you have already received a medical approval of your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim, payment can begin anywhere from a week to several weeks after the interview depending on whether you are asked to submit documentation and on whether the office is backlogged.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  124. Amazing Mom says:

    If my son was approved for social security March 3rd when will I receive his first payment

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Amazing Mom,

      Payment can take from a few weeks to two months or more to begin depending whether your son is eligible for Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income Disability or both and on current workloads in the local office and/or payment center. You can contact the local office to find out what, if anything, you need to submit to get payment started.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • JAIMIE LANZA says:

        I was approved for my child on September 30,3014. My question is how soon till i recieve a check and att he moment my husband lost his job would my soon still be eligible even if noone in the household currently has o income?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Jaimie,

          You should report right away to Social Security that your husband lost his job. If the family has no income and your son was not eligible for the maximum Supplemental Security Income (SSI), his SSI will go up. You must also report if your husband gets unemployment benefits, even though it will be less than he was earning, because unearned income is treated differently than work earnings and your son’s SSI will have to be recalculated based on the unemployment. It can take from a couple weeks to a couple months to get benefits started.

          Sincerely,
          Kay
          Sincerely,
          Kay

  125. dolphingirl89 says:

    I am aready getting SSI/SSA and was wondering If I moved in with my grandfather, would my benefit be decreased. I already talked to him and would be giving him 300 a month for my room and the cost of bills. Plus buying my own food and making meals seperate.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Dolphin Girl,

      Your Social Security Disability will not be affected by moving in with your grandfather.

      If you live in his home as a renter and if $300 plus utilities is market value for the room (the amount he would charge anyone) and you buy your own food, your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) should not go down. You do need to report your move to Social Security. You will need a statement from your grandfather including the date you move in, that he’s renting you a room and the amount you will pay for rent and utilities and the fact that you will buy your own food.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • dolphingirl89 says:

        ok thank you and what would iit do for his ssi?? it wont go down will it??

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Dolphin Girl,

          If your grandfather is getting Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and not Social Security, your being a boarder and paying rent may cause his SSI to go dow because the rent you pay him may be treated as income. If it is affordable for you, you could move in as a member of his household, instead of as a renter, and pay half of the rent or mortgage and half the utilities, while buying your own food. If you did this neither your or your grandfather’s SSI would be decreased. If you want to or need to stick to your original plan of paying rent, I suggest that before you move in you and your grandfather go to a Social Security office and find out for sure whether your being a boarder and paying rent will result in a decrease in his benefits.

          Sincerely,

          Kay

  126. Matthew says:

    I had got approved for SSI and was receiving the minimum and know that I am married and my wife is my payee can I still get more money since now I am a couple or is it just with certain states a use I am from Texas

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Matthew,

      No SSI is paid for dependents, so getting married will not increase your SSI.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  127. Juicyduke says:

    I applied for ssi benefits for my child in April of 2012. I was denied in August 2012. I did not appeal. I filed again in January 2014 and we just got approved March 31. Will my child receive backpay from the first time we applied and were denied or only from the latest application since we didn’t appeal?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Juicy,

      Because you did not appeal the first denial, your child’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments will be based on the January 2014 application.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  128. Jess says:

    My son was just approved for SSI. We’re waiting for the last step, verifying income. He receives $198 per month in child support. I know SSA will deduct some of the funds for that. However, I don’t work and we live with my grandparents. I don’t pay rent but I am responsible for myself and son.

    I receive money from SNAP and I use the child support money (which isn’t much) for any extras like clothes or the occasional game. I don’t have a car or assets. I don’t receive money from the grandparents, only shelter (which I of course appreciate). My concern is that since we live with my grandparents SSI will look at their income as well. I’ve talked to 20 different SSA workers and received different answers every time. Some say the grandparents’ income won’t be taken into account, others say it may.

    This seems like a very unique question and I’ve had problems finding an answer. Thank you.

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jess,

      Your grandparents’ income will not be considered in determining your son’s SSI payment amount. Initially his payments will reduced for free shelter by an amount equal to the lesser of one-third of the maximum possible benefit and his prorata share of shelter expenses. For example, if there are four of you in the household, his share would be one-quarter of the shelter expenses. For example, if the rent (or mortgage and property taxes) and utilities (excluding phone) come to $1,600 a month, his share would be $400; however,one-third of the maximum SSI is $240.33, so his SSI benefit would be reduced by that amount. Once he starts getting benefits, you can start paying his share of shelter expenses to his grandparents. Two months after he starts paying his share, his SSI will be increased by $240.33.
      (Your grandparents will have to provide proof the the shelter expenses and make a statement that you are paying his share once that happens.)

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  129. heather says:

    hi,
    i have a question i got approved for social security February 21st 2014 and they owe me back pay from January 2012 what should i get first and when should i receive my first payment
    thank you and have a wonderful day

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Heather,

      If you did not also file a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim, you may get your retroactive payment first though that is not guaranteed. The amount you will receive will depending on your earnings before becoming disabled and your age. You can request an earnings statement either online at http://www.ssa.gov or by calling 1-800-772-1213 that will estimate your monthly benefit. Multiply that times the number of months since January 2012.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  130. Elora says:

    My husband was told by his local case worker that his first installment of backpay for ssi was released on March 13th. We have had the Ditect Express xard for about a month now and have been checking it frequently. The ssa website says a one time deposit was made on 3/14/14 but today is the 16th and no $$ on the card still?? Is there something wrong?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Elora,

      It can take a couple of nightly bank runs to transfer funds. Hopefully, the payment has loaded to your card by now. If it has not, you need to report non-receipt to the Social Security Administration.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  131. Roxy says:

    Hey,
    What if child support paid back the welfare for what I received well waiting for ssi to be approved. Would they still take the amount or give back the child support? Im still waiting on decision of how much they will give me back.

    Thanks

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Roxy,

      You need to check with the welfare office for a fully informed answer, but I believe that if you do not owe any money paid by welfare and you do not owe back child support, no money will be withheld from benefits paid by the Social Security Administration.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  132. Kim Phipps says:

    My 6-month old son just received his first check last week. How do I know if the check is back pay or the monthly amount? Also, why were there no instructions included such as what the money can be spent on?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kim,

      If the amount of the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) check was more than $721, the check is back pay.

      As your son’s representative payee, you must use the funds for his needs–food, shelter, diapers, medical care, childcare if you are working, etc. If any amount is not needed, it should be saved for his future needs. You can get a pamphlet from the Social Security Administration that describes your responsibilities. You should keep a written record of how you spend the money so that when you are asked to complete an accounting once a year, you will have the information you need nice and handy.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Kim Phipps says:

        Thank you so much for your reply! My only other question is this: if I received back-pay, isn’t that only to be used for medical expenses? Thank you again for being so helpful.

      • lisa says:

        I was on ssi since 2000 , and I was taken off when I got married in 2010 now I am getting back on ssi , how long back will I get back pay ? I applied June 19th 2014

    • Halimah says:

      My son was just approved on April 9th when will he get his first check?!?!

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Halimah,

        Assuming your son is a minor and he has been approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), it can take a bit less than a month to two months or more to get benefits started.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

  133. Sharon Cook says:

    I got approved for my SSI on February 7th, 2014 after fighting for 4 yrs, When will I get my first monthly check?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Sharon,

      It will likely be a few weeks before you receive your first Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment. You will need to submit financial information going back to when you first applied so that the Social Security Administration can determine whether you were financially eligible during the whole time and, if so, for how much each month. Your regular monthly payment will probably be paid first and then the retroactive benefits will be paid in installments six months apart.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

  134. Jennifer says:

    If i have been receiving cash assistance from dta/welfare while waiting for my ssdi to be approved am i responsible to pay all that back to welfare and how far back. That would basically be all my backpay im praying no i would appreciate so feedback if anyone knows the answer plz email me at Jennifer113@gmail thanku

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Jennifer,

      Your welfare office can tell you how far back you will have to repay the assistance that you have received. I would expect it to be at least back to the date of your Social Security entitlement. If you are approved for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability, the money will be withheld from your back pay and paid directly to the state or county agency that assisted you. If you are approved for Social Security only, you will need to make the repayment yourself.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

      • Kathryn says:

        Hi Kay, I have a follow up question. My husband just had his hearing and we think it went well. If he’s approved, his application was for SSI and SSDI and we have been receiving Food stamp benefits, medicaid for our kids and Healthy Indiana Plan Insurance (income based premiums) for my husband. Will SSA figure all that up or do we have to find out from public aid what to report?

        • Kay Derochie says:

          Dear Kathryn,

          You need to contact your public aid office to find out what needs to be reported; however, generally speaking t is necessary to report income changes for all need-based assistance.

          Sincerely,
          Kay

  135. Kristina says:

    My son was approved for ssi benefits. He received his first payment on February 3 Rd. When I went to the office on Friday to try to get an award letter because i hadn’t received one, I was told that his payment for March would be zero because of the amount they estimated my husband made for January. However, their estimate was way off from what he actually made. Will they get an actual amount from my husbands employer? Should I bring in my husbands paystubs for January to the office on Monday?

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Kristina,

      You are responsible for providing proof of your husband’s earnings, which do affect your son’s benefit amount, so yes, do take your husband’s pay stubs to the office. Be sure that they take a copy and return the originals to you.

      Sincerely,

      Kay

    • Shakya says:

      When did ur son get approved and what did u have to do after he got approved

  136. Patty says:

    kay, I became disabled August of 09 but did not file for disability until November 2013.. i have been approved but was wondering how far back will i get back pay or retro pay. Thanks!

    • Kay Derochie says:

      Dear Patty,

      Please see my response to you of earlier today.

      Thanks,

      Kay

    • tammy says:

      I have two questions my son is on ssi and had to move home due to his health he will pay rent and utilities, food for the basement apartment we are going in for change of address do we bring in bills for utilities phone etc and rent agreement ?
      Also I have applied for ssi I am 54 do they go by my social security statement disability amount the one you get in the mail . on there it states 1200.as iv worked since 13yrs of age ?

      • Kay Derochie says:

        Dear Tammy,

        If your son receives Social Security Disability (SSDI) based on his earnings record, it is not necessary to report what he pays for in the household. If he receives Supplemental Security Income (SSI), then what he is paying does have to be reported.

        If he receives SSI, please explain the financial arrangement with your son a bit more so I can respond. Which of the following applies?
        1. He pays a flat rate for housing and food?
        2. He shares housing and food costs?
        3. He pays a flat rate for room and shares utility and food costs.
        4. He pays a flat rate for rent and utilities and shares food costs.
        5. His food is bought and prepared separately? If so, indicate which of the above situations applies to rent and utilities.

        With regard to your claim for disability benefits, because you refer to your earnings record, I believe you mean you have applied for Social Security Disability (SSDI). The estimate on your Social Security statement is close to the amount you will receive if approved. If you have worked in the past year, give Social Security your 2014 W-2s and any pay stubs from this year so those earnings can be included in the actual calculation. If your son has been disabled since before age twenty-two and you are approved for benefits, he may qualify for additional benefits on your earnings record.

        Sincerely,
        Kay

        Sincerely,
        Kay

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