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What is Supplemental Security Income & Who is Eligible?

August 27, 2020

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal income program funded by general tax revenues designed to help blind, disabled, and older adults who have little or no means to receive income. This program provides cash so those people who are eligible can meet their basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.


Who is Eligible for Supplemental Security Income?

1. Elderly Citizens age 65 or older

2. Blind Citizens who have a central visual acuity for distances of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the use of corrective lenses.

3. Disabled Citizens of any age so long as the person is medically determined to be physically or mentally impaired, (including an emotional or learning problem) that:
 – Results in marked or severe functional limitations (child)/results in the inability to do any substantial gainful activity (18 or older); and
 – Can be expected to result in death; or
 – Has lasted or is expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months

Compassionate Allowances (CAL) are a way to quickly identify diseases and other medical conditions that, by definition, meet Social Security’s standards for disability benefits. These conditions primarily include certain cancers, adult brain disorders, and several rare disorders that affect children.

Visit for more information.


Other Qualifications for SSI

1. The individual must have limited income and resources, for the purpose of SSI including:

 – Money earned from employment
 – Money received from Social Security benefits, workers’ compensation, unemployment benefits, the Department of Veterans Affairs, friends, or relatives.
 – Cash on hand in bank accounts, stocks, U.S. savings bonds
 – Land ownership
 – Life insurance values

In order to qualify for SSI, countable resources must not be worth more than $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a couple in total. Learn more about what things do not count towards this resource limit HERE.

2. The individual must be a U.S. citizen or national or an alien who meets certain applicable requirements, and resident of one of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands (except for a child of military parent(s) assigned to permanent duty outside the U.S. or certain students temporarily abroad).

3. The individual must not be in an institution (such as a hospital or prison) at the government’s expense.

View the Benefit Eligibility Screening Tool to take a brief questionnaire and find out if you are eligible for SSI or other benefits.


Learn How Texas Gulf Bank Can Assist With Your Special Needs Trust  

Navigating benefit systems is complicated enough without the added challenge of providing accessible income while retaining applicable government benefits. There are limitations to the amount of funds a child with special needs can have in his or her name to receive Supplemental Security Income.

Not only is it essential for parents to prepare a financial plan for the lifespan of their child, but they must also maneuver the complexities of providing financial independence without losing available governmental assistance. 

Contact Our Team for Assistance:

Ranelle Hampy
Executive Vice President
Wealth Management Officer

Tammy VanNewhouse
Vice President
Wealth Management Officer


*Consult your tax advisor for how a Special Needs Trust might benefit you, depending on your particular tax situation. 

NOTICE | Wealth Management Department Investments include non-deposit investment products which are:

  • Not bank deposits 
  • Not FDIC insured
  • Not insured by any federal government agency
  • Not guaranteed by the bank 
  • May decrease in value