The Social Security Administration manages Supplemental Security Income benefits, although these benefits come from the general revenue and not Social Security taxes. Filing for SSI requires different qualifications and information. SSI is need-based assistance for disabled, blind or individuals ages 65 and older. Social Security personnel will assist with application for SSI. Schedule an appointment to save waiting time.
You will need a Social Security number to apply for SSI. You also need proof of citizenship or eligible noncitizen status. Your birth certificate is proof if you were born in the United States. Some qualified aliens receive SSI benefits as well, but you will need proof of immigration status. Form I-94 or I-551 or an order from an immigration judge is sufficient for your proof. The Social Security office requires originals of some documents but will make copies and return the originals to you.
If you apply for SSI based on disability or because you are blind, you need a list of your doctors with telephone numbers and addresses. Provide any medical reports you have about your condition. You also need a list of all medications you take, both prescription and nonprescription.
If you have income, you need to provide pay stubs, bank statements and your federal income tax return from last year. SSI rules base benefits on all income, including unearned income. If you receive veteran's benefits, Social Security, interest or dividends, you need documentation for this income.
Your resources include money in the bank and cash on hand as well as life and burial insurance policies. If you have items of value like a boat, motorcycle, more than one vehicle or property in addition to your home, you need to bring titles or deeds and insurance policies. You need recent bank statements for all of your checking or savings accounts.
If you have a home, you need to bring the property tax bill, lease or rent agreement or receipt. You will need the name, birth date and Social Security number of everyone in the household who lives with you. You also need to know if they receive SSI or have a medical assistance card. Make a list of your household expenses for food, utilities and medicine to save time.
- Social Security Online: Understanding Supplemental Security Income Documents You May Need When You Apply 2010 Edition
- Social Security Online: Supplemental Security Income; June 2007
- Social Security Online: Understanding Supplemental Security Income If You Are Disabled or Blind 2010
- Social Security Online: Understanding Supplemental Security Income Reporting Responsibilities 2010