Am I Required To Take Social Security Benefits Instead Of SSI?

Jan 5 2017 - 7:00am

SS recently took me off SSI because I turned 62, and placed me on spousal support. Now, I got a letter from the State saying I would also not be entitled to any state SSI, and, they told me I may loose my Medicaid as well. Was this a mandatory thing or SS rules that they had to take me off the SSI and put me on spousal support ? I asked them if this would affect anything else-like my Medicaid- and they said "oh no, you'll still be considered disabled." It doesn't appear that way to me. I'm also concerned now that I may not qualify for my low-income housing and could get booted out. Anything you know about this is greatly appreciated. I have other questions also, but will ask those later. Thank You, Carol.

Hi Carol,

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a needs based program funded by general tax revenues, not Social Security taxes (https://www.ssa.gov/ssi/). It is intended as a last resort source of income for disabled, blind and aged individuals with little or no other means of support. Thus, SSI recipients are required to apply for any other types of benefits for which they may qualify, such as Social Security, and if the other income is higher than the maximum monthly SSI payment of $735, the SSI payments stop.

State supplement payments to SSI, Medicaid and housing assistance are also needs based benefits, and as such may be affected by changes in the recipient's income and/or resources. I really don't know much about any of those programs, though.

Best, Jerry