Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Journalists covering Social Security for gay couples confuse SSI, SSDI, and normal retirement; they're all different

A recent story about how the Social Security administration is handling same-sex marriage, and same-sex couples after DOMA was struck down, has led to some confusion among the various kinds of programs the SSA administers.

The main issue appears to be SSI, Supplemental Security Income, which Social Security explains here. There have been some cases where SSA kept paying benefits as if the beneficiaries were single and then tried to recoup them.  That story is covered on the GLBT blog.   SSI is paid for by general tax revenues, not the retirement Trust Fund.
Buy Social Security Disability does come from the Trust Fund and can be paid before age 62 to individuals who become too disabled to work in certain circumstances, link here.  There was a lot of discussion about this fifteen years ago.

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