SUPPLEMENTAL SECURITY INCOME (SSI) AND ELIGIBILITY FOR OTHER GOVERNMENT AND STATE PROGRAMS
Many people who are potentially eligible for SSI benefits do not know how receiving SSI affects their benefits or payments from other government and State programs.
In most states, if you are an SSI beneficiary, you may be automatically eligible for Medicaid; an SSI application is also an application for Medicaid. In other states, you must apply for and establish your eligibility for Medicaid with another agency. In these states, we will direct you to the office where you can apply for Medicaid.
Please see the Medicaid site for consumer information at: http://www.medicaid.gov.
SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (formerly "FOOD STAMPS")
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides help for low-income households to buy the food needed for good health. In most states, if you receive SSI, you may be eligible to receive SNAP assistance to purchase food .
If you are applying for or receiving SSI, you may be able to get SNAP information and an application form at your local Social Security office. Offices in California do not process SNAP applications or recertifications.
If all other members of your household apply for and receive SSI, and you apply for SSI, we may help you complete a SNAP application. If you and all other members of your household already receive SSI and SNAP, you may be able to complete the SNAP forms for a recertification at your local Social Security office. SSI benefits count in computing SNAP eligibility.
In some states, the SSI application is also an application for SNAP if the individual lives alone. Please also see our publication, Food Stamps And Other Nutrition Programs.
TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES (TANF)
The TANF program provides cash block grants to states. TANF gives states the flexibility to determine TANF eligibility rules and to set TANF payment amounts.
In a household receiving TANF, we pay SSI benefits only to the blind or disabled adult or child, or age 65 or older member(s).
AFFORDABLE HEALTH INSURANCE FOR CHILDREN WHO NEED IT
Medicaid provides free health coverage to most low-income children through state children's health insurance programs. Contact your local state or local medical assistance (Medicaid) office, social service office or welfare office for more information.
STATE OR LOCAL ASSISTANCE BASED ON NEED
Some states offer state or local assistance based on need to aged, blind, and disabled people through the state welfare department. The state may require you to apply for SSI if you receive state or local assistance based on need. If we approve you for SSI, your state or local public assistance payments will usually stop. Your state may be entitled to collect part of your retroactive SSI benefits as repayment for the money they paid you while we processed your SSI claim.
SOCIAL SECURITY, MEDICAID AND MEDICARE
Many people receive both SSI and Social Security benefits.
Medicaid is linked to receipt of SSI benefits in most States. Medicare is linked to entitlement to Social Security benefits. It is possible to get both Medicare and Medicaid.
States pay the Medicare premiums for people who receive SSI benefits if they are also eligible for Medicaid.
If you get SSI and have Medicare, you will also be eligible for Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage without filing a separate application. See our web site, Help With Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs.
STATE PROGRAMS THAT HELP WITH MEDICARE COSTS
You may qualify for help with certain Medicare costs under the programs below if:
you receive Medicare;
your income and resources are limited
These limits vary in some states.
Contact your state, county or local medical assistance office, social service office, or welfare office to find out if you qualify for one of these programs.
Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) Program
The QMB program helps low–income Medicare beneficiaries by paying Medicare premiums, deductibles and coinsurance.
Specified Low–Income Medicare Beneficiary (SLMB) Program or Qualifying Individual Program (QI–1)
The SLMB and QI–1 programs will pay Medicare Part B premiums only.
Your resources should not exceed $7,160 if you are single or $10,750 if you are a couple. Several items, like your home and a car are not counted. Also, some States use higher resource limits.
Qualified Disabled Working Individual (QDWI)
The QDWI program will pay Medicare Part A premiums.
If you are under age 65, disabled and no longer entitled to free Medicare Hospital Insurance Part A because you successfully returned to work, you may be eligible for a state program that helps pay your Medicare Part A monthly premium.
To be eligible for this help, you must:
continue to have a disabling impairment;
sign up for premium Hospital Insurance (Part A);
have limited income;
not have resources worth more than $4,000 for an individual and $6,000 for a couple. Your state will not count the home where you live, usually one car and $1,500 in burial expenses (per person) as resources; and
not already be eligible for Medicaid.
Some states have different limits.
To find out more about the QDWI program, contact your local, county, or state social service agency or medical assistance office.