SSI Vs. SSDI

Last updated on July 30, 2021

The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides two types of disability benefits:

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), which are based on your work record (similar to Social Security retirement benefits) and how old you are when you become disabled.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which are benefits paid to aged (over 65), blind and disabled people (including children) who have limited income and resources. There are strict income limits for recipients of SSI benefits.

How Much Will You Receive?

SSDI benefits are paid monthly. The amount you receive is based on your average monthly income prior to your disability. It does not depend on how severe your disability is. If you cannot work, you cannot work. The average SSDI benefits recipient in 2020 receives $1,258 per month. The maximum benefit in 2020 is $3,011.

The SSA uses a complex system to calculate SSDI benefits that starts with how much you have paid in Social Security taxes. If the recipient of SSDI benefits dies, a surviving spouse may be able to receive a widow or widower’s benefits. There are many caveats to this, however.

Under certain circumstances, it is also possible for surviving children, grandchildren and even the elderly parents of SSDI benefits recipients to collect survivor benefits. It is wise to consult with an experienced Social Security benefits lawyer if you have questions.

Determining SSI

Because SSI is a needs-based program, a recipient’s “countable resources” cannot exceed $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a couple. Countable resources are assets you own that count toward the resource limit. This does not include:

  • Your home
  • Your vehicle
  • Household goods
  • Life insurance policies
  • Property you or your spouse use in a trade or business or for your job
  • Burial plots or burial funds up to $1,500 each

The SSA deducts your countable unearned income and your countable earned income from the maximum federal benefit amount of $783 for individuals and $1,175 for a couple. The difference is the amount you can receive in SSI per month.

Consult With An Experienced Attorney

As you can see, the systems used to calculate how much a person receives in SSDI benefits or SSI are complex. A knowledgeable disability benefits lawyer can help you protect your rights and receive the full amount you deserve.

Call 619-567-4462 or use the online contact form on this website to get a free consultation. I will answer your questions and provide a good idea of what you can expect if you file for disability benefits.