Certain individuals are eligible to recover both supplemental security income (SSI)and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) at the same time. In some instances, however, your SSI payment can go down if you draw on your SSDI benefits. Moreover, if you draw on your SSDI benefits, you might become ineligible to obtain SSI payments altogether under certain circumstances. This is because of significant differences between eligibility criteria and the intentions of these various disability benefit programs through the federal government.
A knowledgeable OC Social Security disability benefits attorney can answer all your legal questions and help you determine whether you may qualify for concurrent benefits. Your lawyer could also help you file a benefits application and work to get you the full amount of the benefits that you deserve for financial support.
What do SSDI and SSI Benefits Do?
SSDI and SSI benefits share similarities and differences. Both SSI and SSDI benefits are in place to help individuals who are disabled within the meaning of the Social Security Administration’s definition. For an individual to receive a federal disability classification, they must suffer from a mental or physical condition that keeps them from working – or engaging in a substantial gainful activity (SGA) – for a minimum of one year.
The difference, however, is that SSDI benefits are available to individuals who suffer a disability – regardless of how much money they make or their financial situation. Eligibility is not based on income, but on a valid disability and sufficiently paying into the system.
In order for a person to qualify for SSDI benefits, the administration will look at the amount of time that they were employed – and where their employer took out Social Security taxes from their paycheck. The disability benefit amount that the individual will receive depends on their average earnings over a lifetime.
In contrast, SSI is a federal program that is based on need. In order to qualify for SSI benefits, an individual must be blind, disabled, or a minimum of 65 years of age with limited financial resources. SSI benefits do not have any relationship to a pe rson’s employment history, and they might be eligible to recover these benefits even if they never worked for an employer who took social security taxes out of their paycheck.
The Advantages of Receiving Both Types of Benefits
Individuals may be eligible to recover both SSDI and SSI benefits, subject to an SSI maximum. If you are eligible to recover both benefits, there are certain advantages. First and foremost, SSI benefits can serve as additional income until your disability resolves, and you can return to work. In addition, SSDI benefits usually come with a significant waiting period. However, with SSI benefits, no such gap exists, allowing you to recover the full amount of your SSI benefits while you wait to receive your SSDI benefits.
A knowledgeable California Social Security disability benefits lawyer can answer all your legal questions and address your concerns about eligibility for both SSI and SSDI benefits.