North Carolina residents who are receiving Supplemental Security Income through the Social Security disability program have been approved based on meeting certain federal requirements. This includes having an income and resources that fall below a certain level, being blind, or being over 65. It can be somewhat confusing to understand the nuance of finances and how it can affect one's ability to qualify for SSI benefits. For example, there may come a time when an individual might need to take out a loan. A loan can affect SSI benefits. It is imperative to know how.
A loan is something that the SSI recipient gets from a person or an institution that is to be paid back later. There are no rules for the loan details being in writing or by oral agreement other than that it must be an agreement that can be enforced under the law. A loan can range from cash, food, shelter, or something that is used as part of the shelter, like paying utility bills.
A loan can affect SSI benefits in certain circumstances. Generally speaking, if there is a loan, the value of what is received will not be perceived as income by the Social Security Administration and will not reduce the SSI. However, if there are funds that the person borrows and does not spend that month, it will be viewed as income and count toward the limits on resources that all SSI recipients are obligated to adhere to: $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple. An SSI recipient who loans money to another person might have the amount that is owed counted as a resource, which can affect SSI. Receiving interest on a loan is not considered income.
This is merely one of the examples of circumstances under which SSI benefits can be put in jeopardy. Therefore, from the time the person seeks benefits and throughout the entire SSI process, it is smart to have help from a legal professional experienced in all aspects of SSI Supplemental Security Income.
Source: Social Security Administration, "Spotlight On Loans -- 2017 Edition," accessed on Oct. 16, 2017