Before leaving a place like a hospital or jail, people who might be eligible for SSI benefits (money from the government for older people, people with disabilities, or blindness) need to do some things to make sure they get their SSI money when they leave. Here's how it works:

  1. Tell the people in charge at the place you're leaving that you might be eligible for SSI.

  2. Get all the papers and records that prove you need SSI because of your age, disability, or blindness.

  3. Apply for SSI with the Social Security Administration. You can do this online or at a Social Security office.

  4. In some places, they have a way to help you apply for SSI before you leave. This can speed up the process.

  5. Make sure you're leaving the place on the same day you get your SSI money or very soon after.

  6. If the SSI money takes a while to come in, you might need help from local organizations to cover your basic needs for a short time.

  7. If you have health problems, make sure you have a plan for your medical care after you leave.

  8. Keep all the important papers and records about your SSI application and medical history.

  9. Stay in touch with the Social Security Administration to check how your SSI application is going.

Planning like this helps make sure that people leaving a hospital or jail can get their SSI money without any delays.

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Last Reviewed: October 19, 2023