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How does the SSA define Supplemental Security Income terms?

Many of our Los Angeles readers probably know quite a bit about the qualifications for Social Security Disability from reading previous posts here. However, Social Security Income is not as well known as a federal program, and many people do not know what it takes to qualify for SSI.

For starters, an applicant must be a United States citizen or a legal resident. A person who is over the age of 65 may be able to qualify for SSI. And, similar to SSD benefits, a person with a disability could qualify for SSI. Blindness, in particular, is one disability that often leads to qualifying for SSI benefits. But, one unique aspect of SSI is that there are certain income requirements that must be met as well.

"Blindness" has a particular definition when it comes to qualifying for SSI. The Social Security Administration uses the standard of "statutory blindness," which has a range of visual acuity, and obviously test results from an eye doctor would need to be submitted to help prove that an individual falls within the definition.

As for the income requirements, a person who is applying to receive SSI must have limited access to income and other financial resources, such as real estate, cash or investments. In most cases an individual will need to have income and resources that fall below $2,000, but it may be helpful for Los Angeles residents to get more information about what the Social Security Administration counts toward this limit when applying for SSI benefits.

Source: SSA.gov, "Understanding Supplemental Security Income SSI Eligibility Requirements - 2014 Edition," accessed Dec. 18, 2014

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