How to Pay for Nursing Home Care With Social Security

Nursing home care may become necessary for your loved one, and if it does, you'll need to find a way to pay for it. The average cost of a private room in a nursing home as of 2009 was $219 per day, according to The 2009 MetLife Market Survey. Unless you or your relative have the out-of-pocket money to pay for this level of care, you'll have to apply all but $52 of the relative's monthly Social Security amount to the bill. The most efficient way to pay the nursing home is to have the funds sent straight to the nursing home's bank. To do this, the nursing home administrator will need to become the representative payee with the Social Security Administration.


Step 1

Contact your local Social Security Administration office and request form SSA-11. You may also call 1-800-772-1213 to request the form.

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Step 2

Fill out the application in its entirety. Be prepared to present proof of identity. The nursing home administrator is required to provide his or her employer identification number.


Step 3

Make an appointment with the Social Security Administration office nearest you. Bring the SSA-11 form and your proof of identity. The application process is completed with a face-to-face interview.


Step 4

Set up a separate account within the nursing home for your loved one's $52 a month expense allowance.

Things You'll Need

  • telephone or Internet access

  • transportation