Immigration and Disability

    People of all national backgrounds can become disabled and unemployed. If a person is eligible for disability benefits, the United States government can help them make up for their lost income and pay for life's necessities. The Social Security Administration's disability programs can help American citizens and non-citizens alike if they meet the requirements. The Coye Law Firm's attorneys and staff members approach cases by thinking about the many ways the law can work for a client. Our firm aggressively pursues disability claims, but also has experience in immigration or discrimination matters. Contact our firm if you need a disability lawyer to fight for you. Requirements

     Noncitizens may be able to get benefits under Supplemental Security Income if they:
  • were living lawfully in the United States on August 22, 1996 and you are blind or disabled
  • were receiving SSI on August 22, 1996 and you are lawfully living in the United States
  • were lawfully admitted for permanent residence under the Immigration and Nationality Act and have a total of 40 work credits in the U.S.
     If you came to the United States on or after August 22, 1996, then you may not be able to get SSI benefits for the first five years you are considered a lawfully admitted permanent resident. You may be able to get SSI if you are:
  • an active duty member of the U.S. military
  • a member of a federally recognized Indian tribe
  • admitted as an Amerasian immigrant
  • a Cuban or Haitian entrant under the Refugee Education Assistance Act

Providing Proof

     Work credits are a necessary part of a noncitizen's application for Supplemental Security Income. Typically, a person can only earn four credits per year based on the amount of money they earn. For noncitizens, however, the credits earned by spouses and parents also count toward the 40 credit minimum. You need to provide proof of your immigration status when applying for benefits. If you served in the U.S. military, provide the SSA with discharge papers (DD Form 214). If you are a noncitizen, provide them with Form I-94 or I-551 from the Department of Homeland Security. Orders from an immigration judge withholding deportation or granting asylum are also acceptable. Additional Benefits

     Additional benefits, such as Medicaid and Food Stamps, are available for noncitizen recipients of Supplemental Security Income. There is a time limit for benefits paid to noncitizens. In most cases, the Department of Homeland Security will pay benefits for the 7-year time period from when the person was classified as a noncitizen. If your benefits are ending, the SSA will contact you. To apply for Supplemental Security Income benefits, visit our page on the subject and consult the Social Security Administration for more information. A representative can speak with you if you call 1-800-772-1213 between 7 am to 7 pm on weekdays. The Coye Law Firm can help you appeal a denied disability claim. Our attorneys pursue and have had success in all types of disability cases. Call our firm today for aggressive and thorough legal representation.