Results-Oriented Attorney Advocates for Your Supplemental Security Income Benefits

Experienced Social Security lawyer assists you in filing for SSI

At Donald R. Bleier Attorney at Law, I've represented numerous New Yorkers in their application for Social Security benefits. Unlike the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, which requires sufficient work history to qualify for benefits, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program does not. Rather, SSI is designed to provide cash assistance to elderly, blind and disabled people with limited or no income. To qualify for SSI, you must meet one of the following requirements:

  • You have a recognized and qualifying disability
  • You have been diagnosed as legally blind
  • You have reached the age of 65

The average federal monthly benefit under the SSI program was $528 in April 2013. New York adds additional benefits, based on the city and county in which you live, among other factors, to the money already provided by the U.S. government. Furthermore, the state can consider whether you live in a group or assisted living home when determining how much to increase your payments. With New York supplemental benefits and depending on your living arrangement, your maximum monthly payment in 2013 could be:

  • $797 for a single person living alone
  • $733 for a single person paying his or her own expenses in a shared home
  • $1,170 for a couple living alone
  • $55 or $35 for a person who lives in a hospital or Medicaid facility

If you are eligible for SSI, you have access to other benefits as well. You're automatically accepted into the Medicaid program and you may qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides food assistance for you and your family. If everyone in your home receives or has applied for SSI, you can complete an application for SNAP at your Social Security office.

How long does it take to get SSI benefits?

There has been a significant increase in the number of SSI applications since the 2007 financial crisis. Because of this flood of applications, Social Security Administration processing times have greatly increased. The process routinely takes at least six months. However, many SSI applications require at least one appeal before they are accepted. In such cases, the process can take two years or more.

What are my chances of receiving SSI?

Unfortunately, as the number of applications for SSI benefits has increased, so has the number of claim denials -- while the award rate has plummeted. It's been nearly halved in a little more than a decade, from 56 percent in 1999 to just 34.8 percent in 2010. However, despite this drastic decrease, experience has shown me that people who apply for SSI benefits with the guidance of an experienced Social Security lawyer have a much better chance of receiving them.

Work with an experienced SSI attorney to improve your chances of receiving benefits

If you are unable to work, SSI benefits can greatly improve the quality of your life. I, Donald R. Bleier Attorney at Law, have successfully represented New Yorkers of many backgrounds in many different circumstances. To schedule your free consultation, please contact me online or call the office at 585.563.9054.