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Who could be eligible for SSI benefits?

Most people in New Jersey have probably heard of the Supplemental Security Income program administered by the Social Security Administration. Not everyone knows a lot about it, however. This blog post will provide an introduction to SSI for the curious and for those who think they may be eligible for it.

Supplemental Security Income provides money to people who have few resources and low income. People in this situation who are blind, disabled or 65 years of age or older may be eligible for SSI benefits. To qualify, a person must be a U.S. citizen or national who lives in the United States or the Northern Mariana Islands. Some noncitizen residents are also eligible for SSI benefits.

As mentioned above, SSI is for people with few resources and low income. An individual whose resources are valued at $2,000 or less meets the resources threshold for SSI. A couple is eligible if their resources are valued at $3,000 or less.

There are also rules for the amount of income a person can earn and still be eligible for Supplemental Security Income. Things such as home energy assistance and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits do not count as income for purposes of determining eligibility for SSI. Wages and scholarships received by students may not count as income.

This is just a brief introduction to the Supplemental Security Income program. People who are unable to work because of a disability may be eligible for SSI or other Social Security benefits. There are resources available for those who would like more information about their possible eligibility for Social Security programs.

Source: Social Security Administration, "Supplemental Security Income (SSI)," accessed on Nov. 28, 2016

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