BASIC (04-90)

SI 01210.200 Special Blind Income Provision - Comparing Eligibility and Payment Amount Under Federal and State Plan Rules

A. Policy

1. Basic rule

We apply either State plan income disregards or SSI income exclusions, whichever of them results in the lower amount of countable income. But we never use a combination of State disregards and SSI exclusions.

2. Eligibility computation

If applying either State plan disregards or SSI exclusions permits eligibility for a month, the individual is eligible.

3. Payment computations

A computation using Federal exclusions and a computation using State disregards are both needed. In determining payment, we choose the method that yields the lower amount of countable income.

Different computations may be used to determine eligibility and payment. For example, we might establish eligibility using State plan disregards, but then compute payment using the SSI exclusions because they result in less countable income (and, thus, a larger SSI benefit).

B. Definitions

1. Blind countable income (BCI)

Blind countable income (BCI) is the result of applying State plan disregards to a converted blind recipient's gross monthly income.

NOTE: BCI is input to (and displayed on) the system as type K unearned income. But BCI is not actually unearned income and the system does not treat it as such. See D. below.

2. Countable income under federal rules (CI/FR)

Countable income under Federal rules (CI/FR) is the result of applying SSI exclusions to gross monthly income. It is the sum of Federal countable income (FCI) and the value of the one-third reduction (VTR), if applicable.

3. Countable income (CI)

Countable income is the lesser of BCI and CI/FR.

C. Procedure

1. Calculate BCI

Calculate BCI for each month and project a continuing rate. See SI 01210.500 ff. for instructions.

2. Input gross income and BCI

Input to the Supplemental Security Record (SSR) the gross monthly income and any special exclusions that apply, such as blind work expenses (SI 00820.535).

In the same transmission, input BCI for each month as type K unearned income.

3. Cases in force due

If the case is in force due, determine eligibility and payment amount for each month manually. This determination, as explained in A.2. and 3. above, requires a monthly comparison of the results of using the State plan disregards and the SSI exclusions. (Since April 1982, retrospective monthly accounting applies to computations using either State plan disregards or SSI exclusions.) Force the system to release any amounts due, per SM 01701.010ff.

D. Process

WHEN...THEN...
the field office (FO) inputs gross income to the SSRthe system applies SSI exclusions to calculate CI/FR.
the FO also inputs type K income to the SSRthe system reads the amount as BCI (not as unearned income), and compares it with CI/FR.
the system compares BCI with CI/FRthe system treats the lower amount as CI and computes eligibility and payment accordingly.

E. References

Applying State Plan Rules, SI 01210.500

BCI Initial Claims Input, SM 01005.194

BCI Posteligibility Input, SM 01305.315

Identifying BCI on the SSR, SM 01601.760


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