If a Pennsylvania resident becomes disabled, there are two different types of insurance programs that may be available. One is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), and the other is Supplemental Security Income (SSI). While both provide financial support for those who can't work for medical reasons, they have different purposes.
SSI is available for individuals who don't qualify for SSDI but need help making ends meet financially. Unlike SSDI, SSI is not funded by payroll taxes. Instead, funds are provided by general tax revenue. The maximum amount that a person can receive is determined at the federal level and is not based on a recipient's work history. SSI benefits are paid to those who are 65 or older, disabled workers and children who are blind or disabled.
Those who receive SSI may be immediately eligible for Medicare, and states may have supplemental SSI to provide further financial assistance to those who qualify. To qualify, a person must have less than $2,000 in the bank or less than $3,000 for a married couple. Cars with a value of up to $4,500 will not be considered when calculating income and resources. In addition to meeting resource requirements, those attempting to qualify for SSI may also need to meet income requirements.
Blind and disabled individuals may need SSI benefits to help pay bills or meet other financial obligations. However, it is possible that an application could be rejected for any number of reasons. If an application is not approved, it might be necessary to appeal. Legal counsel may know what type of information to include in an appeal and understand how to articulate a person's circumstances to a judge.