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How do earnings factor in when seeking SSI benefits?

North Carolina residents who meet the basic requirements for Supplemental Security Income of being disabled, blind or 65 and older must also understand there are other factors that will be critical to a determination that the person is entitled to SSI benefits. If they do not meet all the criteria, they will face denied SSI claims and may consider appealing the case to try to get the decision overturned. Before thinking about such a problematic scenario, it is important to know how the Social Security Administration considers earnings when deciding on an SSI claim.

When applying for SSI benefits, earnings are considered wages and income from self-employment. When seeking or receiving SSI, the person must inform the SSA about how much they earn. For those who have a representative payee – a person who manages the benefits when the SSI recipient is deemed unable to do so – then that person must report the income. For those who are taking part in Ticket to Work and are trying to get into the workforce, it is also important to report the earnings.

In some cases, another person’s earnings will impact the SSI recipient’s situation. This must also be reported. For example, a spouse who works and resides with the SSI recipient or a child who gets SSI and lives with a parent who is earning money should have their income reported to the SSA. The SSI recipient must report: monthly wages prior to taxes and deductions; if they stop working; if there is a raise or reduction in income; if they take another job in addition to the one they had; if there are work expenses due to the disability; and any work expenses for a blind person. The SSA will need proof of income.

There is a litany of reasons why the SSA might deny or stop SSI benefits. One is when the person fails to properly report their income as they are required to do to get or maintain their benefits. If there is a problem with income reporting or confusion as to earnings and how it impacts a claim, it is important to understand SSI Supplemental Security Income options.

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