What is the Difference Between SSDI and SSI?

Pleasant white-haired elderly man resting his chin on his hands folded on a cane

The Social Security Administration offers two different programs for the disabled. One program is called Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), while the other is known as Supplemental Security Income (SSI). There are very important differences between these programs, and understanding which one is right for you may be critical to ensuring you receive the maximum allowable benefits.

Since 1999, Marasco & Nesselbush has helped thousands of clients obtain monthly disability benefits. Our Rhode Island personal injury attorneys are dedicated to helping you maximize the disability benefits you receive. We will guide you through determining which program is right for you, and we’ll represent you every step of the way, from making a claim to appealing any denials of benefits.

Call or contact us online now to get your case started so you can get the monthly income you need to achieve financial security. There is no charge for the initial consultation, and our lawyers do not collect an attorney’s fee unless we successfully obtain benefits for you.

SSI And SSDI Compared​

SSDI and SSI differ both in their qualification requirements and in the benefits they provide. Some of the most important differences include the following:

  • Work history requirements. To qualify for SSDI, you must have earned a sufficient number of work credits. This is not the case with SSI. You can receive SSI income even if you have never worked, provided you meet the qualifying criteria regarding income and resources/assets.
  • Income and resource limits. To receive SSI, you must have a low monthly income and you must not have more than $2,000 in personal resources or $3,000 in family resources. This is because SSI is a needs-based program. On the other hand, SSDI is not a means-tested or needs-based program. If you have earned work credits, you may receive benefits through SSDI even if you have money in the bank and a high household income.
  • Funding. SSDI is funded through payroll taxes. You essentially pay premiums from your paycheck to qualify for benefits. SSI is funded by general tax revenues. Either way, chances are that you’ve paid for these programs when you paid taxes, and you deserve to receive these benefits if you are disabled. This is why Marasco & Nesselbush fights so hard to help those whose applications are denied.
  • Maximum monthly income. Your SSDI benefits are based on the wages you earned over your life. The average monthly SSDI payment is $1,146 as of 2014, and the maximum monthly payment for SSDI is $2,642 as of 2014. The maximum SSI benefits are $721 per month. If you qualify for SSDI, you can often get more money each month than you can on SSI. You may be able to get SSDI benefits based on a parent or spouse’s work record, so check with the experienced lawyers at Marasco & Nesselbush to find out which program is right for you.
  • Medical coverage. Recipients of SSI benefits usually qualify for Medicaid benefits automatically. Those receiving SSDI benefits may qualify for Medicare, 24 months after the “date of entitlement.”
  • Working on disability. SSDI and SSI treat your attempts to return to work differently. It is possible to try to work for longer, and to earn more, without SSDI benefits being affected than if you start working while receiving SSI income.

These are just a few of the fundamental differences between SSI and SSDI. Although both programs define “disability” in exactly the same way, they are very different in many ways. Our lawyers can help you understand which program is right for you and which will maximize the benefits you receive.

Get Help With Your SSI Or SSDI Claim In Rhode Island​

At Marasco & Nesselbush, our dedicated and experienced social security disability attorneys have helped many clients obtain the disability benefits they need and deserve. We are ready to advise you on all aspects of making a disability benefits claim, and we will deal with the Social Security Administration on your behalf.

Dedicated to social, economic and personal justice, our attorneys will not give up until you receive the benefits you deserve. We will do our best to see that your claim is approved as early on in the process as possible, but if necessary, we will also help you appeal a denial of benefits.

Call or contact us online now to get your claim started. The initial consultation is free and comes with no obligation. You pay us nothing upfront, and we collect attorney’s fees only if we obtain benefits for you.

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