You will have an overpayment if Social Security pays you too much money because they have the wrong information or not enough information about you. It’s your job to make sure Social Security has the right information about you, and that they get that information on time. Here are examples of things that can cause an overpayment:
- You don’t let Social Security know right away when you start working.
- You don’t let Social Security know right away each time your earnings change.
- You inform Social Security about changes, but they don’t put the information into their computer system.
- You earn more money than Social Security allows while you’re collecting SSI benefits.
- You don’t inform Social Security right away about other money that comes into your household, such as
- your spouse getting a job,
- you getting workers’ compensation or child support,
- you getting money from a court case,
- someone paying rent or heating bills for you, or
- you getting a loan without careful paperwork about repaying it.
- You get married, or your spouse moves in or out, but you don’t tell Social Security right away.
- You let someone put their vehicle, house, or money in your name.
- You have a bank account with more than just your name on it.
- You are in jail for more than a month.
- You have more resources than the allowable limit.**
- You are no longer disabled but you continue to get benefits.
- You do not report a change, such as your address or living situation, to Social Security on time.
**Social Security says I am over the resource limit. What does that mean?
Social Security has a limit on what you can own while you’re on the SSI program. These are called resources.
These things don’t count as resources for SSI:
- one vehicle that you use,
- a house you own and live in, and
- personal belongings that you use.
Resources that do count are things like
- cash and bank accounts,
- land or a house you don’t live in,
- extra vehicles,
- antiques or jewelry you have because of their cash value, and
- deemed resources (resources that belong to a spouse but are counted toward you).
The limit on resources that count for SSI is $2,000 for one person. That means you cannot have more than $2,000 in resources.
You won’t qualify for SSI if your resources are too high when you apply. If you get too many resources after you start getting SSI, Social Security will consider you not eligible for the SSI program for the months when your resources were too high. You will have an overpayment for those months, and you may be cut off from the SSI program.
You can call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 or go online to www.socialsecurity.gov to find out what things you or your spouse are allowed to have as resources when you are on SSI.