Online Services, SSI

Why It’s Important to Report Life Changes to Us

July 28, 2022 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: November 2, 2023

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Did you know that certain life changes can affect your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments? Sometimes your circumstances may change after you apply for or begin to receive SSI. When that happens, it’s important for you to tell us about these changes. This will ensure that you receive the benefits to which you’re eligible.

Types of Changes to Report if You Have Applied for or Receive SSI

When you apply for or get SSI, you must tell us about certain changes. You must also tell us about changes for your spouse if you are married and living together, and parents if applying for a child. Common changes you must report to us include:

  • Change in income.
  • Change in resources (including bank accounts, vehicles, or property).
  • Change in employment (i.e., starting, stopping, or changing jobs).
  • Change in your address or persons moving in or out of the household.
  • Entering or exiting a nursing home.
  • Entering or exiting a correctional institution (i.e., jail or prison).
  • Change in U.S. citizenship or lawful non-citizen status.
  • Change in marital status.

For a complete list of SSI reporting responsibilities, please read the following publication:

How to Report Changes in Wages

You can conveniently report your wages using our:

Be sure to sign up for monthly SSI wage reporting emails or text reminders. If you prefer, you may also report changes by:

Report Changes in a Timely Manner

If you do not report changes to us in a timely manner, you may be underpaid and not receive the amount due as quickly or be overpaid and have to pay us back.

The SSI program may apply a penalty that will reduce your benefits if you fail to report a change. You may also be penalized if you report the change later than 10 days after the end of the month in which the change occurred or lose SSI for not reporting the information we use to determine eligibility for payments.

Securing today and tomorrow starts with being informed. Please share this information with your friends and family—and post it on social media.

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About the Author

Dawn Bystry, Associate Commissioner, Office of Strategic and Digital Communications

Deputy Associate Commissioner, Office of Strategic and Digital Communications


  1. robert b.

    would losing cigna short term disability make a difference in your ss disability amount ?

    • Elizabeth I.

      exactly like the IRS making all their own rules with merely one exception = a walk in bank card is 100% necessary for obvious reason!

    • A.C.

      Hi, Robert. Thanks for your question. A payment from worker’s compensation, a public disability benefit, or a pension based on earnings not insured under Social Security, may reduce your benefit. For more information, please see our pamphlet, How Workers’ Compensation and other Disability Payments May Affect Your Benefits. For specific questions about how your payment ending may affect your Social Security Disability, please contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.



  2. Enrique F.

    Cambio mi status de residente legal a ciudadano por naturalización. Para hacer este cambio tengo que acudir a la oficina o lo puedo hacer en línea.

  3. Jan K.

    Because of my husbands income (he is under 62 and working and I am not working and age 70) our combined family earnings are over $40,000. I believe I must pay taxes on my SSI. How do I have taxes withheld from my SSI monthly payment and where do I find info about paying taxes on SSI.

    • A.C.

      Hi, Jan. Thanks for visiting our blog. In order to have taxes withheld from your Social Security benefit, you must start by printing, completing and submitting an IRS Voluntary Withholding Request Form (Form W-4V). On this form, you can choose to have 7, 10, 12, or 22 percent of your monthly benefit withheld. The Form W-4V (to withhold federal taxes from your Social Security benefits) can be returned to your local Social Security office by mail. See our Benefits Planner: Withholding Income Tax From Your Social Security Benefits web page for more information. We hope this helps.

      • Wendy K.


        • A.C.

          Hi, Wendy. Thanks for visiting our blog. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments aren’t taxed. However, you must pay taxes on your Social Security benefits if you file a federal tax return as an “individual” and your “combined income” exceeds $25,000. If you file a joint return, you must pay taxes if you and your spouse have “combined income” of more than $32,000. If you are married and file a separate return, you probably will have to pay taxes on your benefits. For more information, visit our Benefits Planner.  For tax questions, you will need to contact the IRS. Their toll-free number is 1-800-829-1040 or you can visit their website. We hope this information is helpful.

  4. Jenny

    I was overpaid and benefits suspended. Please tell me how to get them back

    • A.C.

      Hi, Jenny. Thanks for visiting our blog. We are sorry to hear about your situation. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. You can also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

    • Wendy K.

      Jenny, I can help. SOME of this may depend on the State you’re in and whether you have SSI or SSDI.
      First of all, if you think the overpayment was not your fault, and you want the SSA to reconsider the overpayment, you need to get the RECONSIDERATION OF OVERPAYMENT form. All forms are available to print and fill them out by hand on You can either go to Forms and Documents via the website, or the Disability Benefits Overpayments category. You must decide which form to send back pretty quickly and you mail it to the local office you have been assigned to. If you know it was your fault, but you can’t afford to have them take out your benefits, fill out the the Waiver. Mail or fax documents to the local office in which you’ve been assigned. Sometimes, you will need to produce additional documentation. They may assign you an Agent. If they do, his or her name will be on the documents they sent you to announce the overpayment. If there is going to be additional funds in your account, usually more than $2,000.00 for SSI, it’s best to tell someone at your local office why and what the money is for. It probably won’t make a difference as far as them accusing you of overpayment, but at least you did your due diligence. Every once in a while, I glance at my booklet that lists what to report. Both of my situations were unusual. First, my mom is 86. She gave up her large condo when my Dad passed away, and began staying with friends and family. She still wants to pay her part of the bills so she was sending me money every month to pay HER bills. Once my benefits were deposited, it pushed me over $2,000.00. The very next day, the balance would be less than half that amount. I was told that didn’t matter. It didn’t matter that the money wasn’t for me, or that it was only in my account for 24 hours. If it’s in your checking, it counts as income. Another thing that happened is my son is also on SSI due to Asperger Disease and second level bi-polar disease. He was accepted into the State’s Medicinal Marijuana Program. It’s highly recommended for Nuero-Divergent individuals but is highly regulated and quite expensive. He is the only one allowed to get the medication at the Special Pharmacy. My ex-husband offered to pay for the license, doctor fee, and medication. I figured if it worked as well as they say it will, maybe he could get off of Disability and get a job. I disclosed both things to SSA in May 2022. In June of 2022, I received letters of Overpayment. I tried the Reconsideration first but was denied. I thought they would want him off of Disability! So now I’m waiting on the decision of the Waiver and an informal Hearing. I know I’ve given you a lot but knowledge is power! Let me know if you have more questions. Good luck.

      • Jenny T.

        Wendy k I do have more questions

      • Jenny T.

        Thank you for your help. I really appreciate it. I was able to file the waiver you are speaking of and got that taken care of. Now some time had gone by and my benefits are still suspended. What do I need to do to get my benefits back?

      • Jenny k.

        How did your review go

  5. Sarah E.

    What happens when you’ve tried to call your case manager 3x to update him. And he hasn’t even responded back to you yet regarding your recent health changes. And when you try to call SS you can’t even get through to someone because they’re so busy?

    • A.C.

      Hi, Sarah. We are sorry to hear about your experience. If this is a time-sensitive issue, you may wish to visit your local office. Most local offices have resumed in-person service for people without an appointment. Customers who walk in without appointments may encounter delays. Visit How to Get Help from Social Security to learn more, including what to know if you need to visit an office. We hope this helps.

  6. Howard A.

    If I lost my social check, I would drive off a Cliff.

  7. Dan W.

    To Whom It May Concern:

    I notified one of your Agents named ‘Marquita’ this morning via person-to-person telephone call that my 79-year-old roommate passed away last Saturday so your office can stop sending Direct Deposit payments to his checking account before this coming Monday.

    I gave her all the relevant data she requested.

    Therefore, your office headquarters should immediately terminate his account.

    In addition, I informed his bank in person this morning that my friend has passed away so they can close out his checking account and stop receiving his Direct Deposits.

    It is harder than heck to expedite these changes now that most of your business is done online and the wait time on the phone to talk to a live agent even in the early morning is about 30 minutes.

    Hour online system is so antiquated it cannot discern the difference between a telephone number and a Social Security Number, but I left my email hoping that you will get back to me with a way to contact your office directly regarding the report of the passing of a loved one or family member who is on Social Security benefits.


    Dan Whittman

    • A.C.

      Hi, Dan. We are sorry to hear about your loss and your experience. Typically, the funeral director notifies us directly to report a death. To verify, you can contact your local Social Security office for assistance. We hope this helps. 


  8. Raymond

    How to report a death of a love one

    • A.C.

      Hi, Raymond. We are sorry to hear about your loss. Typically, the funeral director notifies us directly to report a death. To verify, you can contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  9. Debbie S.

    In May of 2020 I was in the hospital with Covid for a little over a month. I got my Social Security but I didn’t think I would need to let them know about it. I missed two months of pay at work. I was home rehabbing so I could get stronger and get back to work. I am thankful for my Social Security and my paycheck.

  10. Robert G.

    It’s very apparent to me that “rules” are not unmanageable.

    However the way I was treated durning the Covid-19 Shutdown was horrific and has pushed me to the brink of homelessness.

    I am so disgusted with this Social Security Administration.

    • A.C.

      Hi, Robert. We are sorry to hear about your experience. You can submit feedback by visiting our Contact Social Security page. Once there, select the “Email Us” link. This will take you to the “Email A Question to our Support Team” form where you can complete and submit a compliment, complaint, or suggestion. We hope this helps.

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