Topic Categories:

Overview of Disability

Disability Back Pay

Requirements for Disability

Applications for disability

Tips and Advice for Disability Claims

How long does Disability take?

Winning Disability Benefits

Common Mistakes after a Denial

Mental Disability Benefits

Denials for Disability

Appeals for denied claims

Disability Benefits from SSA

SSI Benefits

Child Disability Benefits

Qualifications and How to Qualify

Working and Disability

Disability Awards and Notices

Disability Lawyers, Hiring Attorneys

Social Security List of Conditions

What Social Security considers disabling

Medical Evidence and Disability

Filing for Disability Benefits

Eligibility for Disability Benefits

SSD SSI Definitions

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Do You Have To Qualify For SSI Financially?

Social Security uses the same medical determination process to medically qualify you for Social Security disability and SSI disability. While the same medical determination qualification process exists for both programs, SSI disability applicants must also meet income and resource requirements to qualify for disability benefits.

Social Security reviews income and resources (resources is term that Social Security uses for "assets") at the time of your initial disability application, and again if you are medically approved for disability benefits.

In this sense, you do have to qualify for SSI financially even when you already medically qualify for disability. SSI is a need based disability program and like most other social help programs there are financial requirements.


The SSI disability program resource limit is $2000.00 for an individual and $3000.00 for a couple. SSI resource limits have been the same for many years, however they are subject to change should Social Security determine to do so.

Social Security allows an individual or couple to exclude one vehicle (usually the highest valued) and the home and land they live on. All other resources (i.e. land, stocks, bonds, houses, 401K account, or any other resource that can be easily converted to cash) are counted against the resource limit.


The SSI income limit is somewhat more subjective in that the limit amount is subject to other variables such as household composition when work earnings are involved. In this kind of situation, we are speaking of work income provided by a spouse rather than the disability beneficiary.

Social Security allows more income to be earned through work if the family is larger. The income limit amount of a family of six is more than the income amount limit of a family of four.

While Social Security allows for more income to be earned by a non-disabled spouse, the disability applicant is still bound by SGA rules. If an SSI applicant has earnings over the SGA limit, their disability claim is denied.

There are types of income other than work that could cause an applicant not to financially qualify for SSI disability benefits. Income derived from workman’s compensation, short term or long term disability, trust funds, retirement, or unemployment benefits counts dollar for dollar against the SSI monthly disability benefit amount, if the applicant receives more than the SSI monthly disability amount their disability claim is denied.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

How Far Back Can SSI Back Pay Be Paid?
Social Security Disability for insomnia or sleep disorders
What is the difference between Social Security disability and SSI?
Filing with SSA for disabled child with autism
SSI Benefits - who is Eligible and How do I apply for them?
What Benefits come with SSI Disability?
Who is eligible for SSI Disability?
The SSI Award Letter

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

Filing for disability - How to file for SSD or SSI and the Information that is needed by Social Security
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions can you apply and qualify for?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
How to Prove you are disabled and qualify to win disability benefits
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it and receive it
Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications Criteria