As we discussed in Wednesday’s post, qualifying for disability benefits through the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is different than for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). The two programs are the basis of the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) benefit options for people with long-term disabilities or conditions. Most people apply to receive benefits through one program or the other, but it may be possible to qualify for both SSDI and SSI.
The SSA labels this combination as “concurrent benefits,” and applicants must first qualify for SSDI in order to qualify for SSI, since SSDI mandates a minimum work history. In order to gain both forms of benefits, you must have an unearned income of less than $698 per month, which is the amount of the current SSI payment.
Most people who apply for concurrent benefits do so because they have been approved for SSDI benefits, but have been awarded a relatively low monthly benefit amount. The average SSDI payment in 2012 is $1,113 per month. Potential applicants should be advised that even with concurrent benefits, you will not be able to receive more than $698.
As we discussed on Wednesday, SSI requires that you not have personal assets of over $2,000 ($3,000 for a married couple). An experienced attorney can help you understand if applying for both SSI and SSDI is an option for you.
The process of applying for benefits can be confusing and frustrating. Failing to submit a thorough and detailed application can mean rejection or a long battle to get the benefits you need. If you have questions or concerns about applying, contact a Tulsa Social Security disability attorney for more information and an explanation of the process. We offer free consultations as well, and you can reach us by phone at (918) 587-0050.