Understanding Social Security Income Requirements: Eligibility Criteria and Benefit in 2023

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The Social Security Income Requirements for low income in 2023 is an individual’s monthly income of up to $914 or a couple’s monthly income of up to $1,371 if both spouses are beneficiaries. (These are also the maximum monthly SSI benefits from federal monies; most states provide certain beneficiaries additional compensation.)

Income definition is somewhat elastic. For the purposes of assessing SSI eligibility and calculating benefits, Social Security has an extensive list of what forms of earnings, payments, and non-cash aid it deems “countable income.” They count (if you receive Social Security payments).

You must earn at least 40 social security credits to qualify for social security benefits. You earn credits while you work and pay Social Security taxes.

The number of credits doesn’t affect the amount of benefits you will receive. We use the number of credits you’ve earned to determine your eligibility for retirement or disability benefits, Medicare, and your family’s eligibility for survivors’ benefits when you die.

We cannot pay benefits to you if you do not have enough credits.

Social Security Income Requirements

There are many people who qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) who also qualify for Social Security payments. A request for SSI benefits is actually a request for Social Security benefits. Before granting Social Security payments, we frequently need to get more information from the applicant for Social Security Income Requirements.

Information about individuals who could be qualified for Social Security payments is provided in the following sections.

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Social Security Income Requirements Eligibility

Social Security Income Requirements
Social Security Income Requirements Eligibility

Benefits from Social Security Income Requirements (SSI) are available to three categories of people:

  • individuals with disabilities who are older than 18 but under 65 and have limited means and income The age range covered by this article is 18 to 65.
  • people who are 65 years of age or older and have low means and income.
  • qualifying young people with disabilities under the age of 18. For those under the age of 18, a separate definition of disability is used. See the Benefits for Young Persons section of DB101 for further information about SSI for those under the age of 18.

Who Is Eligible for SSI?

The majority of SSI recipients are elderly or have a handicap that keeps them from working. The government provides beneficiaries with money to assist cover their essential living costs, including clothes, food, and housing.

According to Mary Anne Ehrler, a licensed financial planner and the creator of Secure Tomorrows, a financial planning company dedicated to assisting families with members who have special needs, “It’s a needs-based system.” “SSI payments are for those who are in need of assistance, have no source of income, and have not made contributions to the system. Ehrler says, “You can’t make money if you have no assets.

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What is Income for Social Security Income Requirements?

Income is everything a person receives in cash or in kind that they may use to cover their basic needs, such as food and shelter. For the purposes of SSI, income includes the receipt of any item that can be used to fulfil basic necessities for food or shelter, either directly or through sale or conversion.

Types of income for SSI purposes:

  • Wages, net self-employment income, some royalties, honoraria, and payments for sheltered workshops are all examples of earned income.
  • Any income that is not earned, such as social security benefits, pensions, state disability payments, unemployment benefits, interest income, dividends, and money received from friends and family, is referred to as unearned income.
  • Food and housing that you receive for free or at a concession from their fair market worth are considered in-kind income.
  • Deemed Income is the part of your spouse’s income, your parent(s), or your sponsor (if you are a noncitizen), that is used to determine how much SSI will pay you.

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Income & Asset Limits for Social Security Income Requirements Benefits

Beneficiaries must stay within certain income and asset limits in order to obtain or keep their SSI payments. An individual beneficiary may not be employed for more than $1,767 per month or own more than $2,000 in assets in 2022.

According to Cynthia Haddad, co-founder of Special Needs Financial Planning, a specialty practice of Affine Financial Services, “SSI beneficiaries technically cannot be gainfully employed.” Haddad asserts that recipients must demonstrate that “approval is based on your capacity to work” and that the Social Security Administration would consider a beneficiary’s ability to work as well as their income and assets to determine if they qualify for SSI.

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Social Security Income Requirements
social security income requirements

Who is

aged (65 years of age or older); blind; or capable.

who: has a restricted budget; few resources;

Is a person from the United States a citizen, a national, or a noncitizen who falls under one of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) approved categories of alien;

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In general, your Social Security Income Requirements compensation will be reduced the more countable income you have. You are not eligible to receive SSI payments if your countable income exceeds the permitted threshold. With the SSI programme, some of your income could not be considered income.

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Examples of payments or services that we do not count as income for the Social Security Income Requirements program include but are not limited to:

  • the first $20 of maximum income received in a month;
  • the first $65 of earnings and one-half of earnings over $65 received in one month;
  • the value of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps) received;
  • Income Tax Refunds;
  • Home Energy Assistance;
  • assistance based on need funded by a state or local government, or an Indian tribe;
  • Small amounts of income received irregularly or infrequently.
  • interest or dividends earned on countable resources or resources excluded under other federal laws;
  • grants, scholarships, fellowships, or gifts used for tuition and educational expenses;
  • Food or shelter based on need provided by nonprofit agencies;
  • the loans to you (cash or in-kind) that you have to repay;

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What Happens if You’re Over the Limit?

When establishing a beneficiary’s eligibility for Social Security Income Requirements benefits or prospective adjustments to those benefits, the SSA will compute the beneficiary’s countable income. What transpires if you exceed the limit? There are other things to take into account, including whether your income was earned or not and if your state adds to your SSI benefits.
In general, if your income exceeds the restrictions, your benefits would be gradually decreased and finally terminated, according to Ehlert. The Social Security Administration will cut payments by half of monthly earnings after $85 in income ($65 in earnings plus $20 from any source of income).

“In the view of the SSA, recipients’ first $85 in monthly income is free. If a beneficiary’s income surpasses $1,767 per month in 2023, benefits will probably be terminated

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If the Office of Refugee Resettlement at the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security find that you fulfil the requirements of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, you may be qualified for SSI in certain situations. .

  • Special Immigrants from Iraq and Afghanistan: If you are an Iraqi or Afghan national who was admitted as a special immigrant, you may be eligible for seven years of SSI benefits if you work as a translator or interpreter for the U.S. Armed Forces in Iraq or Afghanistan or if you previously worked for the U.S. Government in Iraq.
  • Afghan non-special immigrant parolee or Afghan humanitarian parolee: If you are an Afghan non-special immigrant parolee or humanitarian parolee, you can be eligible for SSI. The Afghanistan Supplemental Appropriations Act 2022 (Public Law 117-43) was passed by Congress on September 30, 2021, and its section 2502 states that Afghans on humanitarian parole, also known as Non-Special Immigrant Parolees, may be eligible for SSI benefits until March 31, 2023, or until the end of their parole period, whichever comes first.
  • Ukrainian humanitarian parolee:  If you are a Ukraine humanitarian parolee and were paroled between February 24, 2022 and September 30, 2023 (or paroled after September 30, 2023 if you are the spouse or child of such an individual), you may qualify for SSI until the end of your parole period.

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When a person receiving Social Security Income Requirements benefits resides with a spouse who is not receiving SSI benefits, part of the spouse’s income may be taken into account for calculating the SSI payment.

We may include some of the parents’ income in calculating the child’s SSI payments when a disabled or blind child under the age of 18 lives with their parent(s) (or a parent and a stepparent).

With few exclusions, when a noncitizen has a sponsor, we factor part or all of the sponsor’s income into SSI benefit calculations.

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  • when your parent or spouse no longer reside with you.
  • when a youngster who is blind or otherwise disabled reaches the age of 18.
  • when the sponsorship of a noncitizen expires.



Social Security Income Requirements For SSI recipients, there is a combined income and asset ceiling of $1,767 for an individual and $2,607 for a couple, with respective asset ceilings of $2,000 and $3,000. The SSA may restrict or even cancel recipients’ benefits if they exceed that cap. But if their ABLE account has less than $100,000 in it, recipients may be able to utilize it as a workaround.

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