If you live in Milwaukee, WI, the rules for being eligible for supplemental social security income are the same as if you lived anywhere else in the nation. In the majority of cases, the rule is that you cannot receive Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) at the same time. Only very rare cases get approval for concurrent benefits.
To receive both the SSDI and SSI benefits at the same time, you must first be approved for Social security disability insurance, and your monthly payments must be on the low side. There are several reasons why some people may have low SSDI monthly payments. These include:
- You may not have been gainfully employed or have worked very little or not at all in the past
- At the time you became disabled and applied for social security disability insurance, you may have had a very poor work history.
- You may have been handicapped or become disabled at a young age and consequently did not get a chance to develop a track record of gainful employment
- You probably earned low wages throughout your work history
These factors may be the reason why you have low SSDI benefits because, in order to meet the program’s requirement, you must have an adequate number of ‘work credits’ built up over many years of employment.
Supplemental Security Insurance in Wisconsin
Social security insurance, on the other hand, is a financial need-based program or an income-based program. In order to receive social security income, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services clearly specifies that the applicants must have low income and must be 65 years of age or older, blind or disabled.
People who apply for SSI based on a medical condition must show proof that they have little or no income, that they are either U.S. citizens or meet all the requirements for non-citizens, and they are diagnosed as medically disabled by a qualified healthcare provider. For applicants who suffer from an impairment other than blindness, it is required they should either not be working, or if they do work, they should be earning less than the substantial gainful activity (SGA) level. For applicants who are blind, the monthly SGA amount for 2018 is $1970. For applicants who have a medical impairment other than blindness, the monthly SGA amount for 2018 is $1180.
When you apply for social security insurance, all your countable income sources will be evaluated to determine if you meet the requirements. The countable income in general consists of all the earned income as well as all the ‘unearned income.’ When you get SSDI benefits, this money is considered to be unearned income. However, you should be fully aware that any money you earn should not exceed the minimum as specified by the social security insurance program. If you are earning SSDI more than your SSI, then you will not get the latter. In the State of Wisconsin, the limit set by SSI on unearned income is $710 per month. If you exceed that, you will not be a candidate for SSI.
Will I Be Eligible for Supplemental Security Insurance?
Being eligible for Supplemental Security Insurance is not as simple as you would imagine. There is a significant amount of documentation required, and the agency requires a great deal of information to determine your eligibility. They will look at both your earned and unearned income when determining your financial need as well as any other money that you may have access to through other sources and your assets. The SSI program has a monthly income limit, and it also has a limit on total available assets. In Milwaukee, the total asset limits are $3,000 for married couples and $2,000 for single people.
If your total assets and income are too high to qualify for Social Security Insurance, you may still be a candidate for SSDI. Again, if you do not have any type of work credit or a long employment history, you may meet the criteria for SSI. However, it is very rare that people qualify to receive both SSDI and SSI at the same time.
However, each case is analyzed separately by both SSI and SSDI program officials. Most people cannot get double benefits by combining disability benefits with social security benefits. Even when you are eligible for these combined benefits, the amount of money you will receive may increase your total benefit amount, but they will still never be double.
Finally, be aware that if you are already on SSDI benefits and are approaching the retirement age, you are already at the maximum amount of benefits that you can receive. When you reach the full retirement age, the SSDI benefits will automatically be converted into retirement benefits. However, if you took early retirement and also applied for disability before the full retirement age, then you will receive both disability benefits and retirement benefits. The amount of money you will get will not be doubled but will be based on the maximum amount that you can receive. The exact amount of money will again depend on when you started to get the disability payments. If you are past the retirement age and become disabled, you are only eligible for SSI and not SSDI.
Consult with a Supplemental Security Insurance & Social Security Disability Attorney in Wisconsin
Overall, it is important to understand that social security disability is more of an entitlement program and anyone who has contributed to the social security system within the last 10 years is eligible to apply. However, those who receive SSDI benefits are eligible to receive Medicare benefits two years after they become eligible for SSDI. The same does not apply for SSI. Applicants who qualify for SSI can also qualify for Medicaid. Finally, it is important to note that the two payments from SSD and SSI can be significantly different. There is no set amount, and the level of benefits that a person receives is dependent on their income level and work history. If you have any questions or queries regarding Supplemental Security Insurance or SSD benefits, call our social security disability attorney at Tabak Law, and they will be happy to answer all your questions.