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how to apply for SSI benefits while social security field offices are closed


The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for all Americans — especially those who are disabled or elderly. Apart from being more vulnerable to the virus, those whose income fall below certain limits also face difficulties in applying for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.

Typically, SSI applicants visit Social Security field offices to apply for benefits. So, when the Social Security Administration closed 1,200 of its field offices to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, SSI applicants were left with few options for filing for benefits, which average $560 per month. 

Now, most applicants are calling the SSA to request the 23-page application by mail. When the application finally arrives, they must complete the application on their own.

Who Is Eligible for SSI Benefits?

Typically, low-income disabled, blind, or elderly Americans qualify for SSI benefits. They must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 65 years of age or disabled or blind
  • Have limited income and resources
  • Be a US citizen or national or an alien who meets specific requirements
  • Reside in the US, District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Islands (with exceptions to children of military parents)

The SSA will consider a person’s marital status, monthly income, and resources to determine their eligibility. 

Where Can Applicants Get Help? 

At Joyce & Bary Law, we’re happy to fill this COVID-related void and help people who want to file for SSI benefits take on the overwhelming application process. 

We coordinate with field offices and can request an application on your behalf. We will assist clients in completing the application, identify areas that can be improved before submission, and submit the completed document to the SSA on behalf of the client. 

If you or someone you love needs to apply for SSI benefits, let us help you tackle the application. Just call us or contact us using our online form!