Ask Larry

What Do I Need To Do If I Want To Invest In Cryptocurrency?

Hi, I have been on SSDI for the longest time (and for a while on SSI, till I got in trouble for investing in mutual funds). After paying off my debt, I applied for the SSI program again. My job's pay is erratic & impossible to pay the expenses of the cost of living. I want to get off my dependency of Social Security, but I don't want to get burned again by investing in cryptocurrency. Do I report any earnings I garner with cryptocurrency the same way I report my earnings to the SSDI &/or SSI programs? Should I just discontinue the programs I'm involved in if I'm going toinvest in cryptocurrency?

Hi. Investing in cryptocurrency or any other type of investment wouldn't have any impact on Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits. Unlike Supplemental Security Income (SSI), SSDI benefits are not needs based. The only types of income that can affect SSDI eligibility are wages or self-employment income.

However, investing in cryptocurrency could affect your eligibility for SSI benefits. SSI is designed to supplement an eligible person's other income, so if you receive income from your cryptocurrency investment then that could reduce or stop your SSI payments. Furthermore, in order to be eligible for SSI a person can't have countable assets of more than $2000, so if your countable assets go over that amount inclusive of the value of your cryptocurrency, then you'd no longer be eligible for SSI payments.

If you are receiving SSI benefits now, then presumably your countable assets are currently less than $2000. If you use some of the funds you presently have to purchase cryptocurrency, then you'd need to notify Social Security if the value of your investment increases enough to cause your countable assets to exceed $2000. Or, if you receive income from selling cryptocurrency then you'd need to report that income to Social Security.

Best, Jerry

Apr 13 2022 - 4:48pm
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