Call Us - We're Easy to Talk To (214) 999-9999

Proposed Legislation to Improve the SSI Program

In 2013, Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) introduced the “Supplemental Security Income Restoration Act of 2013, H.R. 1601, which would provide much needed updates to the SSI program including:

  • Increase the SSI resource limit from $2,000 for individuals ($3,000 for a couple) to $10,000 ($15,000 for an eligible couple);
  • Increase the general income disregard from $20 to $110 per month;
  • Increase the earned income disregard from $65 to $357 per month;
  • Repeal the in-kind support and maintenance provision; and
  • Repeal the transfer of assets penalty.

Additional information about the need for this legislation to update the SSI program is available on the National Senior Citizens Law Center website, A policy brief for the bill describes the reasons why the updates are important:

  • The resource limit has only increased by one third in 41 years, while the cost of living is more than five and one-half times what it was the year SSI began in 1972. Limited to $2,000, an SSI beneficiary cannot save enough to pay for predictable needs, let alone deal with sudden unforeseen emergencies.
  • The rule that disregards the first $20 of monthly income (the general income disregard) has not changed in 40 years.
  • The In-Kind Support and Maintenance (ISM) rule reduces benefits by one-third if the SSI beneficiary is living in the household of another person and receives in-kind support. The rule is complex and imposes an increased financial burden on SSI beneficiaries and their families as well as an administrative burden on already stressed local SSA offices.
  • In 1999, Congress enacted a harsh transfer of assets penalty, which results in a period of ineligibility when someone transfers a resource to another person. This penalty applies even if the SSI recipient is repaying an informal loan from family or a friend. It also has a complex set of exceptions which add to the administrative burden and make errors inevitable.

This information is courtesy of the National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives.

Bob Kraft

I am a Dallas, Texas lawyer who has had the privilege of helping thousands of clients since 1971 in the areas of Personal Injury law and Social Security Disability.

About This Blog

The title of this blog reflects my attitude toward those government agencies and insurance companies that routinely mistreat injured or disabled people. As a Dallas, Texas lawyer, I've spent more than 45 years trying to help those poor folk, and I have been frustrated daily by the actions of the people on the other side of their claims. (Sorry if I offended you...)

If you find this type of information interesting or helpful, please visit my law firm's main website at You will find many more articles and links. Thank you for your time.

Find us on your preferred network