The Difference Between SSI and SSDI Benefits
What Is the Difference Between SSI and SSDI?
The main difference is that SSDI benefits are determined by disability and work credits, meaning that the recipient can qualify for Medicare after 24 months of payment, whereas SSI benefits are determined by age and disability, as well as limited income and resources. In most states, SSI recipients automatically qualify for Medicaid.
To understand both better, the Social Security Administration pays disability benefits under two different programs:
What Is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)?
Social Security Disability Insurance is the program most people think of when they hear “disability benefits.” It is commonly known by the initials SSDI, or just SSD, or even DIB (for Disability Income Benefits).
This program is for insured workers, their disabled surviving spouses, and children. In order to qualify, or to be considered “insured,” you must have worked five of the past ten years before you became disabled. You must either be permanently disabled or have a disability expected to keep you from working for twelve months or more.
What Is Supplemental Security Income (SSI)?
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a program for people with little or no income and resources. The disability requirements are the same as SSDI, but SSI is an entitlement program and is available for people who have NOT worked the required number of years.