If Mom Moves In With Me Can She Still Get SSI Benefits?

courtesy of DailyCaring.com


Question:

I'm thinking about having my mom move in with me, so I can take care of her and support her financially.

She's over 70 years old, has some health issues, and her income is very limited. She can't really afford to keep living on her own.

Can she still apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) if she lives with us? She thinks that if she lives with me, she won't be able to get any SSI benefits. Is that true?

Answer:

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a government program that pays monthly benefits to people with limited income and resources who are age 65 or older, disabled, or blind.

Your mom's ability to get SSI won't be affected by where she lives. Different living situations only change the amount of her SSI benefit payment.

SSI eligibility only counts the senior's income

A senior has to be eligible for SSI in the first place. That's based only on their personal income and assets.

How living situations affect SSI payment

Once someone is eligible for SSI, the government will look at their living situation to figure out how much their SSI payment will be.

If your mom moves in with you, she'll be spending less money on her living situation. Therefore, her SSI payment amount would be less than what she'd get if she lived in her own house.

The official SSI website gives good examples of living situations that can affect how much SSI someone can get. They explain why the payment amount gets reduced in certain situations.

Toward the bottom of the page, there are four real-life examples of how much SSI payment someone would get if they were in different living situations.

Related: Taking Over Your Parents' Finances

Example A

  • Senior lives alone in apartment, but brother pays the rent.
  • SSI = $488.67

Example B

  • Senior lives alone in a home they own, but son pays utilities.
  • SSI = $653

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Example C

  • Senior lives in another person's house and shares all expenses (including mortgage).
  • SSI = $488.67

Example D

  • Senior lives in another person's house rent-free, but pays for certain household expenses.
  • SSI = $188.67

Bottom line

The only way to know if your mom is eligible for SSI and how much her payment would be is to speak with someone at the Social Security office.

They'll ask about her specific situation, find out about her income and assets, and calculate her specific payment amount based on where she lives.


Are you caring for a parent or spouse? Get free practical caregiving tips at DailyCaring.com to help you solve day to day challenges. Find out about in-home care that Medicare does cover or get a straightforward explanation of essential Medicaid basics. Sign up for free daily emails today to get the latest information.

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