Social Security Disability vs. Supplemental Security Income

The Social Security Administration has a range of federal benefits programs to help seniors and disabled individuals receive the financial support they need. The two most common programs are Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, and Supplemental Security Income, or SSI. For people in North Carolina navigating between these two programs, it\’s important to know how the two differ to fully understand the benefits.

Differences between the two programs

There are several main ways that Social Security Disability and Supplementary Security Income are distinct from each other. These include:

• Eligibility
• Benefits start date
• Average monthly benefits
• Maximum monthly benefits
• Health insurance type

Determining factors for different types of coverage

With SSI, the determination of benefits comes from a person\’s age or disability as well as how limited they are in finances and resources. SSDI, on the other hand, puts into consideration a person\’s work credits along with their disability.

People who receive SSI benefits are automatically qualified for Medicaid in most states, including North Carolina. SSDI recipients instead qualify for Medicare once they\’ve been receiving disability payments for 24 months. There are some special circumstances, like with ALS patients, where their Medicare coverage starts immediately upon receiving SSDI.

In some cases, a recipient can be on both Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income simultaneously. This happens when a person has both a work history as well as limited funds and means.

Each program has its own set of considerations that come into play when deciding benefits. Then, once those factors are weighed, each program offers different benefits both in type and amount. In order to ensure that you get the benefits package that\’s best for you, it\’s helpful to know how each of these programs works.