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Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is a Federal income supplement program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes):

  • You must be blind, disabled, or age 65 or over.
  • You must be either a citizen of the United States, or meet very narrow requirements based on your U.S. permanent residency, military service, or political asylee or refugee status.
  • Your monthly income must be low. Only about half of your actual income will be taken into account, but this counted income cannot be higher than an amount set by the state in which you live — from $700 ro $1400 per month. However, some states allow people with higher incomes to receive state benefits.
  • The property you own (minus certain items, such as your car and home) must be worth less than $2,000, or $3,000 for a couple.


If your application is approved, your SSI benefits will include cash payments at a minimum of $710 per month for an individual or $1,066 per month for a couple (2013). Your state may supplement this amount with an additional payment (called the State Supplementary Payment). The federal amount is adjusted in January of each year, depending on the U.S. cost of living.

You will also be eligible for Medicaid, food stamps, rehabilitation, and home care, if necessary.