Sometimes, a person is blind or suffers from a disability from the time he or she is a child, making it difficult, if not impossible, for that person to ever hold down a job. Or, perhaps, a person is elderly and is no longer working when a disability strikes. Or, it may be the case that a person with a disability has few financial assets and may have a source of income.
Individuals in such situations, wherever they live in the U.S., may be in need of help financially, but without the adequate work history, they may not be able to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). However, there is another government benefit that they may be able to apply for: Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
The SSI program, like the SSDI program, is run by the Social Security Administration. While there are some similar requirements and criteria between the two programs that must be met to determine if an applicant is disabled, there are different income requirements between the SSDI and SSI programs. The SSDI program requires applicants to have the necessary work credits, but the SSI program may still be an option for individuals who have never worked or who have been out of work for an extended period of time. In addition, SSI might be an option for children who are disabled, unlike SSDI.
Of course, to obtain SSI benefits, all of the legal requirements must be met. Moreover, each individual’s application for SSI benefits is unique, just as each person’s life is unique.
Therefore, it may help individuals who want to apply for SSI benefits to first consult with an attorney, such as those at the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod and Baril, PLLC. An attorney can assess their client’s situation, and help their client throughout the application process, including appealing a denial of benefits, if necessary. The firm’s SSI overview may be a good starting point for those in Knoxville who are considering applying for SSI.