How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay

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.

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on SSDRC.com

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?

New and featured pages on SSDRC.com

Who can help me file for disability?

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
If you apply for disability in Nevada
Getting a Disability Lawyer in Nevada

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

Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?

Permanent Social Security Disability

What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?

Who is eligible for SSI disability?

Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?

What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?

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?

For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.