SSI is Supplemental Security Income. It is a cash benefit paid monthly by the Social Security Administration.
You can be eligible for SSI if you have a low income and you are:
- age 65 and older, or
- age 0-65 and blind, or
- age 0-65 and disabled
You also have to live in the United States and be a citizen, or have an immigration status that qualifies you to receive SSI.
How much money does SSI pay?
As of 2024, SSI pays up to $998.68 to an eligible person living independently in Vermont. If you are married and you and your spouse are both eligible for SSI, the most SSI will pay is $1,520.80. These amounts may be less or more depending on whether you live with other people, and if you get other income. See the SSI in Vermont flyer for the total monthly payment for different household types.
What does “disabled” mean?
If you are a child under age 18, disabled means you have medical problems that have a serious effect on your ability to do things same age children do.
If you are an adult, disabled means you have serious medical problems that prevent you from working on a regular basis.
What does “blind” mean?
Blind means you have vision of 20/200 or worse in your better eye (with glasses) or a visual field of 20 degrees or less in your better eye.
What does low income mean?
- It means your countable monthly income must be less than the amount of money SSI pays.
- It also means that you must not have more than $2,000 in countable assets if you are a single person, or $3,000 if you are married and living with your spouse.
Read more about what is required to be eligible on the Social Security website.
Other issues with SSI benefits
Learn how the following items affect your SSI benefits.
How is SSI different from SSDI?
SSDI is Social Security Disability Insurance. SSDI pays a monthly cash benefits to adults (18 and over) and people who are disabled and blind. But, you do not have to have a low income to be eligible for SSDI. Instead, you have to have worked and paid Social Security taxes on your pay to be eligible for SSDI. Also, SSDI may pay benefits to family members.
How do I apply for SSI?
To apply for SSI, you can either:
- Call 1-800-772-1213 and Social Security will send you an application and set up an appointment.
- Start the application process online. Then a SSA representative will schedule an appointment to help you apply for benefits.
- Contact the Social Security office nearest you and ask for help. (See contact information below.)