When it comes to government programs available, there are plenty of options. However, each option can help in its own way. For example, if you are a recipient of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), then you will only be able to use funds that are charged onto an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card towards qualifying groceries.
Two programs that can help Americans in need are Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). These programs can provide a lot of support to their recipients, and they’re easier to qualify for than many people realize. You may be able to benefit from one of these programs and not even realize it!
What is Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSI is a program offered by the federal government. It’s funded by the United States Treasury general funds. However, the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) is the one that provides and manages the program. This program is designed to help those that are either elderly or disabled as long as they have low income/limited resources. It can help by giving cash to recipients who can use those funds towards needs like groceries, housing, clothing, etc.
Who is Eligible?
Not everyone will be able to qualify for this program. Instead, only those that meet the following conditions can qualify:
- Have a qualifying disability or
- Be at least 65 years old or
- Be blind
- Have a qualifying citizenship status
- Have limited resources and income
There are other factors that can impact your qualifications like your marital status or certain members in your household.
How to Apply for SSI?
If you want to apply to the SSI program, you will want to review eligibility requirements before you start the application process. You can review the eligibility requirements online. However, you can also get in touch with the SSA for any questions you may have by calling 1-800-772-1213 (or TTY 1-800-325-0778 if you are hard of hearing or deaf).
Once you confirm the eligibility requirements, you can apply either online, over the phone, or in person. However, it’s important to note that you may not be able to apply in all of these ways. Your area may have a different application process compared to another area. A good rule of thumb is to apply as soon as possible since these applications are free.
If you want to apply over the phone, you can call the number listed above at 1-800-772-1213 (or TTY 1-800-325-0778 if you are hard of hearing or deaf). You can also schedule a telephone appointment with a representative at your local Social Security office. Finally, if you want to apply in person, you can get in touch with your local Social Security office and schedule an appointment from there!
Information for Your Application
When you apply, you can expect to provide basic information. Some information that you will need to provide includes:
- Personal information like your name and social security number
- Your date of birth
- The mailing address and phone number of the individual trying to get SSI
What is Social Security Disability Income (SSDI)?
SSDI gives benefits to individuals and their eligible family members if they are insured. To be insured, an individual must have worked long enough, recently enough, and have paid Social Security taxes on what their earnings were. They also need to have a qualifying disability!
How to Apply for SSDI
If you want to benefit from the SSDI program, you will need to apply. You have the option to apply either online, over the phone, or in person. Generally, the disability benefits application process will look like this:
- Get together your information and documents to apply. You can make sure you have the right material by reviewing the Adult Disability Checklist. You can also confirm by asking your local Social Security office.
- Now that your information is together you can complete your application. SSDI applications are free!
- The SSA will check your application to see if you can qualify. This includes meeting basic requirements, checking your work history, reviewing work, current work activities, etc.
- Once your application is processed it will go to the Disability Determination Services office in your state.
- Finally, your state agency will make the disability determination to see if you can qualify.
You can check the status of your application by checking your “my Social Security account.” If you are having a hard time reviewing the status of your application online, then you can also call the SSA at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. If the decision that is made is one that you don’t agree with, you have the right to appeal. However, the appeal must be requested in writing within 60 days of receiving your decision.
Information for Your Application
When it comes to your application, you will want to be ready to submit a variety of information. That includes personal information, medical condition information, and work information. When it comes to personal information, you can expect to provide details like:
- Your date of birth and Social Security number
- Names and birth information of children that are younger than 18 years old
- Financial information
- Spousal personal information like their date of birth, marriage information, etc.
When it comes to the medical condition information you’d need to provide, you can expect to provide details like:
- Personal information of a person that is knowledgeable about your medical condition
- Detailed medical condition information like the names of your doctors, medicines, the dates of medical procedures, etc.
Finally, when it comes to the work information you’d need to provide, you can expect to provide details like:
- How much you made last year and this year
- Personal information like the name and address of all of your employers from this year and last year
- A list that consists of the dates of employment for up to five jobs that you have had in the past 15 years before you were unable to work
- Information about workers’ compensation or other similar benefits that have been filed (or information on cases that you plan on filing)
Americans Can Get Checks Worth $3,627: Who Can Get Them?
The maximum amount that SSDI benefits can provide is $3,627 a month in 2023. Very few people can receive the maximum amount. Instead, people typically receive benefits that are closer to the average. The average SSDI benefit is $1,483. If you are interested in getting the maximum amount then you will want to get in touch with your local Social Security office. They can answer specific questions you have from there!
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has a variety of assistance programs available. Two programs include Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Each program can provide support to qualifying people. However, the specific details of this program like who can benefit and how much they can benefit will vary. In 2023, some Americans can get checks worth $3,627 a month if they can receive the maximum SSDI benefit. However, very few people get this amount. Instead, it is closer to the average which is $1,358. If you have any questions, get in touch with the SSA!