Disability benefits may be available for immigrants to the United States under the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program or the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.
Non U.S. Citizens and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) Benefits
Non U.S. citizens can qualify for disability benefits under certain conditions. Since SSDI works like an insurance program, eligibility will be based on meeting the requirements for work credits as well as other Social Security Administration’s medical requirements or its equivalent as laid down in the Blue Book. You also need to be in the United States on a work permit and have a social security number assigned to you on or before January 1, 2004. You must be in the United States on a non-immigrant visa (B1, D1, or D2) AND prove that you are here legally for the months that you apply for SSDI benefits.
Non U.S. Citizens and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Benefits
Eligibility for disability benefits for immigrants under SSI’s criteria is even tougher. Your income and other resources must meet right requirements.
In addition, you must prove that you are legal and meet at least one of the eight primary categories under the SSI provisions which include such status as refugees, those here on asylum, an alien, or the family member of an alien who has suffered severe cruelty while in their own nation. The SSI may consider special circumstances if you’re a victim of human trafficking or an American Indian born in Canada and a member of a federally recognized tribe.
Disability benefits for illegal aliens are generally not available. However, in November 2014 President Barack Obama issued an executive order that allowed illegal aliens who received deferred action status to receive new social security numbers and work authorization. All earnings can be transferred to their new social security number and count towards qualifying for Social Security benefits.
If you or anyone you know is a non U.S. citizen and would like to know if they qualify for SSDI or SSI benefits fill in the FREE evaluation form today.