Skip to content
Social Security Online
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Links to SSI

2008 Edition
blank spaceEn Español
SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home

Understanding Supplemental Security Income
SSI Spotlight on Transfers of Resources
blank space2008 Edition

What are resources?

ResourcesResources are cash and things you own and can turn into cash. Examples of resourcesresources are bank accounts, vehicles, property, stocks and bonds.


Why are resources important in the SSI Program?

To get SSI benefits, your countable resourcesresources must not be worth more than $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a married couple. We call this the resource limit.

Read the SSI Spotlight on ResourcesResources for information about how we count resourcesresources.

What does it mean to transfer resources?

Transferring a resource is giving away or selling a resource. For example, giving away cash to another person is a transfer of resources.

What happens to my SSI benefits if I transfer a resource?

If you, your spouse, or a co–owner give away a resource or sell it for less than it is worth, you may be ineligible for SSI benefits for up to 36 months. How long you are ineligible for SSI benefits depends on the value of the resource you transferred.

What happens if I sell a resource?

If you sell a resource for what it is worth, the 36–month ineligibility period does not apply. But, the money you receive from the sale may make you ineligible if it puts you over the $2,000 resource limit for an individual or $3,000 for a couple.

What happens if I put my resources into a trust?

In some cases, we consider putting resources into a trust as a transfer of resources that makes you ineligible for SSI benefits. In other cases, we count the trust itself as a resource. Moreover, the value of the trust could put you over the resource limit.

See the SSI Spotlight on TrustsTrusts for more information on how trusts affect SSI eligibility.

How does transferring a resource affect Medicaid coverage?

Medicaid may not pay for certain health care costs if you or your spouse give away a resource or sell it for less than it is worth. If you have any questions about how transferring a resource affects Medicaid coverage, please contact the welfare or social services agency that handles Medicaid in your area. They can answer your questions about how transferring resourcesresources affects Medicaid.

blank space
Return to
Top of Page

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CALL 1–800–772–1213 (TTY 1–800–325–0778),
OR CONTACT YOUR LOCAL SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE. Portal to U.S. government agencies Privacy Policy | Website Policies & Other Important Information | Site Map
Need Larger Text?