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SSI vs. SSDI

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					         Social Security
Work Incentives and Ticket To Work

             Dwayne J. Mayes
   Community Work Incentives Coordinator
            CUNY Bronx-WIPA
  (Work Incentives Planning and Assistance)
               718-960-8942

                                              1
          SSI vs. SSDI: WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES?
                                          SSDI-Social Security Disability Insurance
SSI- Supplemental Security Income
Adult must have limited income            Adult must be considered medically
and resources, and be unable to           disabled or blind and have worked
work due to a physical or mental          and paid taxes long enough to be
impairment expected to last at            covered. Adults whose disability
least one year.                           began prior to age 22 may also be
                                          covered if their parent is an insured
Child must have limited income            worker who is disabled, retired, or
and resources, and a physical or          deceased.
mental condition that can be
medically proven. At age 18,              Child must have a parent that is an
impairment is evaluated based on          insured worked who is either
the definition of disability of adults.   disabled, retired or deceased.
                                                                               2
 MEDICAL REQUIREMENTS OF DISABILITY


The Social Security Administration has strict
   definitions of disability. You cannot get
   disability benefits simply because your
 doctor says you are disabled. However, the
   definitions of disability are different for
children (under 18), than they are for adults:


  A Child is defined as: A person who is
neither married nor (as determined by SSA)
         head of household and:


             is under age 18; or


   is under age 22 and (as determined by
SSA) is a student regularly attending school.
                                                 3
  A Child is Disabled If:

1. He or she has a physical or mental
condition(s) that very seriously limits
       his or her activities; and


2. The condition(s) has lasted, or is
expected to last, at least 1 year or is
    expected to result in death.




                                          4
HOW DOES THE SSI PROGRAM WORK
         FOR A CHILD?


   Typically, to be eligible for SSI
benefits, a child must be either blind or
                disabled.


  A child may be eligible for SSI benefits
 based on disability from the date of birth;
  there is no minimum age requirement.
  A child may be eligible for SSI benefits
based on disability until they reach age 18.
    At age 18, their impairment(s) are
   evaluated based on the definition of
           disability of adults.
    At any age, a person with a visual
impairment may be eligible for SSI benefits
based on blindness if the impairment meets
  the definition of blindness (also called
           statutory blindness).

                                               5
   An Adult is Disabled If:


     1. He or she is unable to do any
    substantial work because of their
     medical conditions(s). In 2008,
 substantial work means earning $940
  (gross pay) or more in a month; and


  2. The medical condition must have
lasted, or is expected to last, at least 1
year, or be expected to result in death.




Another very important part of the Adult
             Definition is:
   “The individual must not be able to
 engage in any kind of substantial work
  which exists in the national economy
regardless of whether jobs are available
  locally, accessible to individuals with
disabilities, or the individual’s desire to   6
               have the job”.
           FINANCIAL REQUIREMENTS OF SSI/SSDI


        It is important to remember the financial differences between
                     Supplemental Security Income (SSI)


                                     and


Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) which is also referred to as Social
                                   Security.
                                                                         7
                      SSI


 • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a “Needs
                   Based” program.
  • Disabled individuals must have limited income
               and resources to qualify.
• In New York State, there are set SSI amounts that
    are determined by the living arrangement of the
                      individual.
                                                  8
         New York State SSI Payment
        Rates Effective January 1, 2008
•   Everyone who receives SSI gets a specific amount each month that depends on their
    Living Arrangement or “who they live with”, in addition to any other income that they
    may receive. The living arrangement is called their Payment Rate and is used for all
    SSI Benefits calculations. These are the current SSI Payment Rates for New York
    State in 2008:
•   “Living Alone” rate:                                                         $724

•   “Living with Others” rate:
•   (Contributing to expenses)                                                   $660

•   “Living in the household of another” rate:
•   (Not Contributing to expenses)                                               $447.67

•   Residential Care Facility (IRA),( Group Home) rate                          $1072

•   Your actual monthly SSI Benefit check may be lower than these amounts if you have
    any other source of income. It may also be lower if any money is being withheld for
    any reason. However, it is safe to assume that no one receives more than these
    amounts of SSI each month.
•   Minimum Personal Needs Allowance = $142 per month.                          9
   SSDI is an “Insurance-Based Program”. Disabled individuals (and their
dependents) can qualify for this benefit based upon the individual working and
having paid Social Security taxes. Social Security Benefits can be in the form
                                      of:
                 1. Retirement Benefits to those 62 or older.


  2. Dependent Benefits to spouses and children of deceased, disabled, or
                             retired workers.


3. Disability Benefits to those who cannot perform Substantial Work and meet
                              SSA disability criteria.


The amount of Social Security benefits an individual receives can vary greatly
from person to person and depends on how much a person has contributed to
                    Social Security Taxes and their age.
                                                                       10
      HOW DOES THE SSDI
     PROGRAM WORK FOR A
           CHILD?
     Generally, a child can receive SSDI
    Benefits (even though they have never
    worked) if the following conditions are
                      met:


  Before age 18: If they are a child of an
 insured worker (SSDI beneficiary) who is
    either disabled, retired or deceased.


 After age 18: If they are disabled before
age 22; AND the child of an insured worker
(SSDI beneficiary) who is disabled, retired   11
              or deceased.
         RULES THAT APPLY TO BOTH PROGRAMS:


   Generally, the first test or rule that must be met for qualifying for each
program during the application process, is whether or not the applicant is
 doing work at a substantial level. This is considered “Substantial Gainful
  Activity” (SGA) and is a dollar amount calculated on a monthly basis.
 Once you are receiving SSI benefits however, the SGA no longer applies.


   For the year 2008, the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) amount is
         $940 per month if non-blind and $1,570 per month if blind.




                                                                        12
           MYTHS CONCERNING SSI AND EMPLOYMENT


                                    Myths about SSI:


◘ People who work are not eligible for SSI.
◘ People who get a job will stop receiving SSI cash benefits.
◘ People who go to work will lose Medicaid.
◘ SSI benefits will stop if a person goes into a training or educational program.
◘ Once your SSI cash benefits stop, it takes a long time to get them back.
                                                                                    13
These myths often discourage people who may be eligible for SSI
from applying in the first place, and then discourage them from
seeking employment if they are already receiving benefits.

However, the SSI Program offers two main advantages for young
                           adults:

First, in New York State SSI can provide financial income up to
$660 per month in 2008 if they are still living at home.

Second, is that qualifying for SSI usually means automatically
receiving Medicaid
                                                            14
             Work Incentives
•   Unearned Income Exclusion
•   Earned Income Exclusion
•   1619(b) Medicaid
•   Medicaid Buy-In
•   Impairment Related Work Expense
•   Trial Work Period
•   Extended Period of Eligibility
•   Expedited Reinstatement
•   PASS Plan

                                      15
                                         SSI Income


Generally, for SSI purposes, the more income you have, the less SSI Benefit you will qualify
 for. If your countable income is over the allowable limit, you cannot receive SSI benefits.
           However, some of your income may not be counted for the SSI program.


             There are several types of income for SSI purposes, these include:


a) Earned income from working or self-employment.

b) Unearned income from Social Security Disability Benefits, Unemployment Benefits,
Interest Income, and cash from friends and family.

c) In-Kind Income which is food or shelter that you get for free or less than its fair market
value.

d) Deemed Income which is part of the income from spouses, parents (who you live with)
or sponsors of immigrants.


We will take a look at different types of income and how they affect the SSI Benefit check in
                                         greater detail.                             16
  We mentioned before that SSI is a “Needs-Based” benefit program, and an
individual must be financially needy in order to qualify for this program. We also
   mentioned that income is a consideration in determining how much SSI an
                                individual receives.

 Let’s take a closer look at how working and earning money will affect the SSI
                                 benefit check.

 We will take a look at how Unearned Income affects a person’s SSI benefit
   check, and how Earned Income affects a person’s SSI benefit check.




                                                                          17
    Unearned Income Exclusion
Frank lives with his parents, is disabled and receives
  $300 each month in SSDI Benefits from his retired
  father’s work record. How much SSI can Frank
  receive?
             $300      SSDI Benefits
             - $20     General Income Exclusion
             $280      Remainder of Countable Income

              $660     SSI Rate
            - $280     Countable Income
              $380     SSI Benefit Check

                        Total for the month:           18

                     $300 SSDI + $380 SSI = $680
              Earned Income Exclusion
Frank lives with his parents, is not in school, is disabled and is working. He earns $605
gross pay each month. How much SSI can he receive?

                    $605      Gross earnings
                    - $85     Earned income exclusion
                    $520      Remainder

                    $520/2    50% disregard
                    = $260    Total Countable Income

                     $660     SSI Benefit Rate
                   - $260     Total Countable Income
                     $400     SSI Benefit Check

                                  Total for Month:
      $605 Gross Earnings + $400 SSI Benefits = $1005 Total Income for the Month
                                                                                       19
*SINCE EARNINGS USUALLY CHANGE FROM MONTH-TO-
MONTH, THE SSI BENEFIT CHECK WILL ALSO CHANGE
TO REFLECT THE ACTUAL AMOUNT EARNED.

THIS IS WHY IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO REPORT
EARNINGS TO THE SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
EVERY MONTH.




                                          20
                 2008 NY State SSI Zero-Out Rates


As your earnings increase, your SSI Benefits check will decrease until
you reach a “Zero-Out” point. This is the point where you will no longer
receive SSI cash benefits. But you are still on SSI at this point, and your
cash benefits can continue if you earn below these limits.


SSI PAYMENT RATE                               ZERO OUT EARNINGS


       $724……………………………………………………………$1533


       $660……………………………………………………………$1405


       $447……………………………………………………………$979



                                                                      21
                     Income Exclusions-SEIE

Another Social Security Administration Rule regards Students with Disabilities
who are eligible for SSI Benefits and who have a desire to work. This rule is
called the Student Earned Income Exclusion. This rule change allows
Students to earn more money and still qualify for a larger SSI Benefit check
than non-students.




                                                                        22
SEIE Example:


Frank is 19, still attending school and is living with his
parents. Frank gets a Summer Youth Employment
Program job earning a gross pay of $715 for the entire
month. How much SSI can Frank receive?




                                                        23
                      $715          Gross Pay
                     - $715          Student Earned Income Exclusion
                          $0         Total Countable Income


                      $660           SSI Benefit Rate
                      -   $0         Total Countable Income
                      $660           SSI Benefit Check


                 Total he will receive for the month:


                      $715           Gross Pay
                    + $660           SSI Benefit Check
                     $1375           Total of Earnings and SSI Benefit Check




IN 2008, A TOTAL OF $1,550 EACH MONTH CAN BE EXCLUDED UP TO A
MAXIMUM OF $6,240 FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR. ANYTHING OVER THE $1,550 PER
MONTH/$6,240 PER YEAR WILL BE SUBJECT TO THE $85 AND 50% DISREGARDS.
                                                                     24
                                   SSI Resources

 The limit for “Countable Resources” is $2000 for an individual and $3000 for a couple. For
               the SSI program, “Resources” are things that you own such as:


a) Cash;
b) Bank Accounts, stocks, U.S. savings bonds;
c) land;
d) life insurance;
e) personal property;
f) automobiles
g) anything else you own which could be changed to cash and used for food or shelter;
h) deemed resources.




                                                                                   25
                         1619(b) Medicaid




As SSI Beneficiaries continue to work, their SSI benefits will
begin to decrease each month as they start to increase their
earnings. When they reach the monthly “Zero-Out” rate, their
SSI cash benefits will cease.
 However, due to a provision in the SSI rules legislation called
1619(b), they will still be eligible for Medicaid benefits until
they earn up to $43,636 annually in 2008.


                                                         26
                  Income Exclusions-PASS Plan




One other Income Exclusion you may be eligible for is called a PASS Plan.
This stands for Plan for Achieving Self-Support. If you and/or your spouse
are working, you may think (or have been told by a Social Security
Representative), that your income is too high for your youngster to qualify
for SSI Benefits. However, some of your income could be excluded and put
into a PASS Plan. This would make you income eligible for SSI as long as
your youngster would otherwise qualify based on his/her disability. Here’s
how this could work:




                                                                    27
 Plan for Achieving Self Support
• A Plan for Achieving Self Support (PASS) is an
  SSI work incentive that allows a person with a
  disability to set aside income and/or resources for
  a specified period of time to achieve a work goal.
• A person may set aside income and/or resources
  for obtaining an education, job coaching,
  transportation, job related items or equipment to
  start a business.
• Any person who receives SSI benefits or SSDI
  benefits and could qualify for SSI can have a
  PASS Plan.
                                                        28
PASS example

Frank is 16 years old, lives at home, attends school and has a
disability. He has one younger brother who is not disabled.
Both of his parents work, and their total combined monthly
income is $3800. It’s January and his parents have been
looking at some additional courses at Lehman College that
they think would benefit Frank. The cost of the tuition, books,
and a computer in addition to the car-fare would be around
$4500. The classes start in September. How can Frank qualify
for SSI?



                                                         29
$4500/9 months = $500 per month in a PASS Plan


   $3800         Total Monthly Parental Income
  - $2356        SSI Benefit Reduction Figure
   $1444         Countable Parental Income


   $1444/2       50% Disregard
   = $722        Countable Parental Income


     $722        Countable Parental Income
   - $500        Amount excluded in PASS Plan
     $222        Total Countable Parental Income




     $660        SSI Benefit Rate
   - $222        Total Countable Parental Income
     $438        SSI Benefit Check
                                                   30
                     Total Income for the Month:




 $3300   Parents income minus $500 PASS Plan Deposit
+ $438   SSI Benefit Check
 $3738   Total Useable Income for the Month




                                                       31
              Deeming of Parental Income and Resources
Not all income and resources will necessarily disqualify your child for SSI benefits, there are
exclusions to some of these, and limits to others. One of the most important of these is the
                                    Deemed Resources.


 Deeming is when SSA counts a portion of the resources or income of a spouse, parent or
 alien sponsor of an SSI applicant as belonging to the person who is applying for benefits.


                    If a child under age 18 lives with one parent, $2000 of the parent’s total
                     countable resources does not count.
                    If a child lives with two parents, $3000 does not count.


   The amounts over these limits are counted as part of the child’s $2000 resource limit.


 The deeming of resources and income is calculated on a monthly basis, and the attached
  chart shows the Deeming Break-Even Points for 2008. This applies to monthly income.
                                                                                32
MONTHLY DEEMING BREAK-EVEN POINTS 2008: NEW YORK STATE

         EFFECTIVE                      PARENT TO CHILD
        JANUARY 2008


                              EARNED ONLY            UNEARNED ONLY
           NUMBER
             OF
         INELIGIBLE
          CHILDREN          ONE         TWO          ONE         TWO
                          PARENT      PARENTS      PARENT      PARENTS


             0

      REDUCTION BEGINS    $1,399.01   $2,037.01    $ 677.00    $ 996.00

     ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $2,719.00   $3,357.00    $1,337.00   $1,656.00

             1

      REDUCTION BEGINS    $1,718.01   $2,356.01    $ 996.00    $1,315.00

     ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $3,038.00   $3,676.00    $1,656.00   $1,975.00


                                                                           33
MONTHLY DEEMING BREAK-EVEN POINTS 2008: NEW YORK STATE

        EFFECTIVE                      PARENT TO CHILD
       JANUARY 2008


                             EARNED ONLY            UNEARNED ONLY
         NUMBER
           OF
       INELIGIBLE
        CHILDREN           ONE         TWO          ONE         TWO
                         PARENT      PARENTS      PARENT      PARENTS


            2

    REDUCTION BEGINS     $2,037.01   $2,675.01    $1,315.00   $ 1,634.00

    ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $3,357.00   $3,995.00    $1,975.00   $2,294.00

            3

    REDUCTION BEGINS     $2,356.01   $2,994.01    $1,634.00   $1,953.00

    ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $3,676.00   $4,314.00    $2,294.00   $2,613.00


                                                                           34
MONTHLY DEEMING BREAK-EVEN POINTS 2008: NEW YORK STATE

        EFFECTIVE                      PARENT TO CHILD
       JANUARY 2008


                             EARNED ONLY            UNEARNED ONLY
         NUMBER
           OF
       INELIGIBLE
        CHILDREN           ONE         TWO          ONE         TWO
                         PARENT      PARENTS      PARENT      PARENTS


            4

    REDUCTION BEGINS     $2,675.01   $3,313.01    $1,953.00   $2,272.00

    ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $3,995.00   $4,633.00    $2,613.00   $2,932.00

            5

    REDUCTION BEGINS     $2,994.01   $3,632.01    $2,272.00   $2,591.00

    ELIGIBILITY CEASES   $4,314.00   $4,952.00    $2,932.00   $3,251.00


                                                                          35
  Deeming stops the month after a child turns 18.
  Therefore, a child who could not get SSI benefits
because of the parents income or resources, may be
        able to get it when they turn age 18.




                                              36
    Fortunately, not all income and resources is “Deemed”.
        Examples of income that are not deemed include:


1) Public Assistance or TANF benefits
2) VA Benefits
3) Foster Care payments for an ineligible child
4) Income used to make court-ordered support payments.



      Examples of resources that are not deemed include:


1) A home;
2) Up to $2000 in household goods;
3) Money in a pension fund.

                                                          37
Impairment Related Work Expenses

• Working People with disabilities may have
  expenses that allow them to continue to
  work.
• These Impairment Related Work Expenses
  (IRWEs) are deducted from their Countable
  Income for SSI and SSDI purposes and can
  make them eligible for a higher SSI Benefit
  Check; or entitled to SSDI payments.
                                           38
         Trial Work Period
• If you receive SSDI payments and earn up
  to $670 per month, you can continue to get
  your full SSDI check for up to 9 months.
• This 9 month TWP does not have to be
  continuous, and spans 5 years.
• You are also eligible for an additional 3
  months of benefits. This constitutes a
  “cessation period” of eligibility.

                                               39
  Extended Period of Eligibility
• After the 9 month TWP, if you continue to
  work and earn more than $940 per month,
  you enter your Extended Period of
  Eligibility. This lasts for 36 months and you
  will not receive your SSDI benefit check if
  you are earning more than $940 in a month.
• You will receive your SSDI benefit check
  any month you earn less than $940.
                                              40
      Expedited Reinstatement



• If you become ineligible for SSI or SSDI because
  of Income or Resources, your benefits can be
  restarted without a new application….as long as
  you are still disabled.
• If you reapply within 5 years of being ineligible,
  your benefits will begin right away.


                                                       41
            Ticket-To-Work
• The Ticket-To-Work program is useful to SSI
  and SSDI beneficiaries if they are thinking of
  exploring training and work.
• You can assign your Ticket-To-Work to an
  Employment Network agency and they will
  receive payment for the training/placement.
• You may be exempt from a medical Continuing
  Disability Review (CDR) as long as you are
  using your Ticket-To-Work.
                                                   42
         Information Resources
•   Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA):
    www.socialsecurity.gov/work/ServiceProviders/WIPADirectory.html

•   SSA Work Incentive Liaisons (WILs): www.nls.org/ssassi.htm

•   NYS Department of Labor Disability Program Navigators:
    www.workforcenewyork.org/dpn.htm

•   Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS):
    www.cqc.state.ny.us

•   New York Lawyers for the Public Interest: www.nylpi.org

•   Ticket-To-Work: www.yourtickettowork.com


                                                                            43

				
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