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Application for SSI

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal income supplement program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes):
It is designed to help aged, blind, and disabled people, who have little or no income; and
It provides cash to meet basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.

SSI Eligibility Requirements
Anyone who is:
1. aged (age 65 or older);
2. blind; or
3. disabled.

And, who:
1. has limited income; and
2. has limited resources; and
3. is a U.S. citizen or national, or in one of certain categories of aliens; and
(NOTE: An alien who is subject to an active warrant for deportation or removal does not meet the citizenship/alien requirement.)
4. is a resident of one of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands; and
5. is not absent from the country for a full calendar month or more than 30 consecutive days; and
6. applies for any other cash benefits or payments for which he or she may be eligible, (for example, pensions, Social Security benefits); and
7. gives SSA permission to contact any financial institution and request any financial records that the financial institution may have about you; and
8. files an application; and
9. meets certain other requirements.

Other Relevant Definitions & Requirements
"Blindness" in Social Security disability programs is "statutory blindness," which means:
1. you have a central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in your better eye with use of a correcting lens; or
2. you have a visual field limitation in your better eye, such that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angle no greater than 20 degrees.

An individual age 18 and older is "disabled" if he or she has a medically determinable physical or mental impairment, which:
1. results in the inability to do any substantial gainful activity; and
2. can be expected to result in death; or
3. has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.

1. money you earn from work;
2. money you receive from other sources, such as Social Security benefits, workers compensation, unemployment benefits, Department of Veterans Affairs, friends or relatives; and
3. free food or shelter.
(NOTE: We do not count all kinds of income for SSI, but income that we do count reduces your SSI benefit amount. For more information, see SSI INCOME.

To get SSI, you must be:
1. a citizen or national of the United States; or
2. a non-citizen who meets the alien eligibility criteria under the 1996 legislation and its amendments.

There are seven categories of non-citizens who are qualified aliens. You are a "qualified alien" if the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) says you are in one of these categories:
1. Lawfully Admitted for Permanent Residence (LAPR) in the U.S., including "Amerasian immigrant" as defined in Section 584 of the Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 1988, as amended;
2. Granted conditional entry under Section 203(a)(7) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) as in effect before April 1, 1980;
3. Paroled into the U.S. under Section 212(d)(5) If the INA for a period of at least one year;
4. Refugee admitted to the U.S. under Section 207 of the INA;
5. Granted asylum under Section 208 of the INA;
6. Deportation is being withheld under Section 243(h) of the INA as in effect before April 1, 1997, or removal is being withheld under Section 241(b)(3) of the INA;
7. "Cuban or Haitian entrant" under Section 501(e) of the Refugee Education Assistance Act of 1980 or in a status that is to be treated as a "Cuban/Haitian entrant" for SSI purposes.

If you are in one of the seven "qualified alien" categories listed above, or have been determined to be a "deemed qualified alien" because you have been subjected to battery or extreme cruelty, you may be eligible for SSI benefits if you have limited income and resources and are aged, blind, or disabled and also meet one of the following conditions:
1. You were receiving SSI and lawfully residing in the U.S. on August 22, 1996.
2. You are LAPR with 40 qualifying quarters of work. Work done by your spouse or parent(s) may also count toward the 40 quarters of work, but only for getting SSI. We cannot count quarters of work earned after December 31, 1996 if you, your spouse, or your parent(s) worked or received certain benefits from the U.S. government based on limited income and resources during that period.
3. You are currently on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces, or you are an honorably discharged veteran and your discharge is not because you are an alien. This condition may also apply if you are the spouse, widow(er), or dependent child of certain U.S. military personnel.
4. You were lawfully residing in the United States on August 22, 1996, and you are blind or disabled.
5. You may receive SSI for a maximum of seven years from the date DHS granted you qualified alien status in one of the following categories, and the status was granted within seven years of filing for SSI:
(1). Refugee admitted to the United States (U.S.) under section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA);
(2). Asylee admitted to the U.S. under section 208 of the INA;
(3). Alien whose deportation was withheld under section 243(h) of the INA or whose removal is withheld under section 241(b)(3) of the INA;
(4). Admitted as a "Cuban or Haitian entrant" as defined under section 501(e) of the Refugee Education Assistance Act of 1980 or in a status that is to be treated as a Cuban/Haitian entrant for SSI purposes; or
(5). "Amerasian immigrant" admitted under section 584 of the Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 1988, as amended.

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