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SSI versus SSDI

On Behalf of | Apr 29, 2023 | Social Security Disability

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)? If you have received an injury that limits or eliminates your ability to earn an income, you probably have.

This is what you should know about SSI and SSDI and the differences between them.


Both SSDI and SSI determine your disability using the same factors. They look at your functional ability and medical records to determine your disability level. They also have similar application processes, and once you receive a disability determination from one department, the other department accepts the determination. Finally, both programs offer health insurance programs.

However, SSI and SSDI have significant differences.


SSDI requires full disability and work credits. Therefore, if you do not have sufficient work credits, you likely will not qualify. In addition, you have to wait at least six months after approval for your first payment. The monthly maximum benefit is $3,636, but your award calculation is the result of your contributions to the system during your working years. After 24 months, you can receive Medicare benefits.


Your eligibility for SSI is solely the result of your need. In addition, your monthly payments can vary to reflect income. These awards have a maximum payment of $914 for a single person and $1,371 for a married couple per month but may change based on Congressional action each year. However, you can start receiving payments after one full month of your claim acceptance. When you qualify for SSI, you also automatically qualify for Medicaid. SSI is also limited to those who are blind or disabled or those who are at least 65 years of age.

To increase your chances of approval, learn the documentation and eligibility requirements for each program.