Complete Topic List

SSI How Do Transfers Of Resources Affect My Eligibility?

How Does A Transfer Of Resources Affect Eligibility?

Property transferred by you, your spouse, or other co-owner for less than fair market value could make you ineligible for receiving SSI.

Rebuttable Presumption -
If you give away property or sell property for less than fair market value there is a presumption that the transfer was made for the purpose of making yourself eligible for SSI.

If you did not transfer property for SSI eligibility purposes, you would need to provide evidence to Social Security to show why you transferred the property.


How Is The Penalty Determined?

On all transfers, there is a 36 month look-back period.

  • This is 36 months before the date you filed an application for SSI. If you are already receiving SSI, the 36 month look-back period starts with the date the resources were transferred.
  • Divide the total value of the transferred resources by the monthly SSI benefit amount.
  • This amount in 2018 is $750 per month for an individual and $1,125 per month for a couple.
  • The resulting amount, rounded to the nearest whole number, is the number of months of ineligibility.
  • The period of ineligibility begins on the first day of the month following the month the transfer(s) were made.
  • The period of ineligibility can last up to a maximum of 36 months. It cannot exceed 36 months.

Are There [Other] Resources Which can Be Transferred Without A Period Of Ineligibility?

  • A home transferred to:
    • a spouse;
    • a minor, blind, or disabled child;
    • a sibling who has an equity interest and who lived in the home at least one year immediately before you became institutionalized;
    • an adult child who lived in the home for two years immediately before you became institutionalized and who provided care which permitted you to live at home.
  • Resources to your spouse or to another person for the sole benefit of your spouse.
  • Resources from your spouse to another person for your sole benefit. 
  • Resources to your blind or disabled child or to a trust for the sole benefit of your blind or disabled child.
  • Resources transferred to a trust which was established on or after January 1, 2000 if:
    • the resource is available under SSI trust rules;
    •  the trust was established solely for the benefit of a disabled person under age 65.
  • Resources transferred for a reason other than to qualify for SSI.
  • Resources if you can show you intended to transfer at fair market value or denial would cause an undue hardship.
  • Transferred resources which have been returned to you.

DISCLAIMER: This information is not legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should talk to a lawyer and ask for advice about your options. 

February 2018

POMs SI 01150.110
POMs SI 01150.121
POMs SI 01150.125