Will inheritance affect my Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) payments?

Submitted by Daniel on

Continued eligibility for Social Security Disability Benefits is dependent on many different factors. These include your ability to work, your living situation, and any income and resources you have earned. However, the two disability benefit programs—SSI and SSDI—vary. What may disqualify an SSI recipient may not disqualify and SSDI recipient. Today we will be answering a question about the effect of inheritance on a person’s Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.

If you have a question that you’d like us to address in a future blog post, please leave it in the comment section below or contact us through Facebook, or Twitter. Today’s question is:

Will inheritance affect my SSDI benefits?

If you are a Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) recipient and receive an inheritance, it will not affect your benefits. SSDI is not a needs-based program and is not contingent upon your unearned income—including inheritance.

The only income that may potentially affect your SSDI benefits is any wages that you earn through employment. If you engage in Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA), your monthly payments could be lowered or eliminated as a result. In 2024, SGA is considered to be earning $1,550 or more in one month. If you begin working while receiving SSDI benefits, then it is necessary to report this income to the Social Security Administration (SSA).

However, if you are receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits and have recently inherited funds, your benefits may potentially be affected. This is due to the fact that the SSI program is based on financial need. Any income, earned or unearned, can affect your benefits. Therefore it is imperative to inform the SSA of any changes to your income. You have up to ten days following the end of the month in which the change occurred to report the change.

Additional Resources

Blog comments

Donna Kay Goforth (not verified)

Will the effect on ssi

Will the effect on ssi because of inheritance be in effect for only a year

Sun, 11/12/2017 - 16:02 Permalink
Kristina From … (not verified)

I receive SSDI each month.

I receive SSDI each month. My elderly Mother is considering putting any monies I and my siblings will inherit, in trusts, instead of a lump-sum payout. Will the fact that I may receive money in the form of a trust affect my SSDI? Thanks to whoever answers me!

Sun, 11/12/2017 - 22:10 Permalink
Selena Ray (not verified)

My dad died in 2011 and the

My dad died in 2011 and the insurance through his job was listed as me being the benificary..His job sent me papers to sign and send back so I did At the time is was in the process of getting my SSI..The life insurance money was used for my dad's burial and that was in January 2011..My S SI did not get spprove till May 2011 so when they called about the income stuff and to determined how much back pay and money you will receive the lady was rude and put I lived free off my dad and since he died I have no obligation of paying anyone back and when my dad died in January I received money from his death. I EXPLAINED I have the receipt and all the money went on the funeral and other stuff related to my dad death and I did not receive any money to spend and at the time I was not receiving SSI..So in the end I did not get any back pay..the problem now is since I signed all the papers sent to me from his job and took care of everything related to anything I was the benificary on I figured everything was final when they sent the insurance check...Needless to say my dad had a 401K with his job but had taken it all out Pryor to his death but a few dollar. SO WHEN I signed the papers at his job I was also given the money on his 401k which was about 130.00..now after all theses years I started getting papers from a investment company and I thought it was junk mail so I trashed it.can after my dad died I was getting a lot of junk mail stuff and figured that's what everything was..so I get this thing once again from the same investment saying urgent..so I read it..It informed me of a 401K I had..I called them to find out and they said you have a 401K and I asked how cause I never worked at the place they are saying the 401k is in..also my dad never worked at the place the company 401K was in..so I asked them to check and make sure it was not a mistake. So they did and said the 401K is in my name..I asked if I could of been a benificary on it..sbe told me to call this number and I could find out more .So I called. the place my dad worked at SOLD the company and what happen was there was a ESOP and letters was sent out in Dec 2010 telling employees the ESOP program was being discontinued and employees must take me money out if not it would roll over into their 401K this was to take place the 1st of February 2011..since my dad's work account was closed out January 2011 and they was selling the company and I was listed as the benificary on his 401k and even thought they gave me all the money from his 401k when they closed out his job account. That ESOP account/money later was put into his 401k and when the job was SOLD and all the employees 401k where transferred to another financial company the ESOP money was place into the 401k and the 401k was placed in my name. Now I have already been penalised for my dad's insurance even though it was all used to bury him, I signed all papers ask with his job to make sure everything was done and taken care of now this money comes up and I don't know what to do cause I can't afford to loose my SSI...I was honest with them from the start and got no back pay..So what should I do..it is in my name and it is about 5000.00..can I do a spend down..I felt since it was a ESOP account and I was not the benificary on that is why it was not taken care of when everything else was..but the fact my dad got the letter saying it will be moved into the 401K if you don't with drawl it then that's what happen and I was the benificary on the 401k..Please help me

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 11:32 Permalink
Stacey (not verified)

I am a single mother of a

I am a single mother of a child with cerebral palsy. She receives social security disability income. I will be receiving an inheritance in the coming months and I am curious as to how this may affect her benefits. I was reviewed by Social Security recently and they found I had received 2k from an inheritance in 2015 that I forgot to report. They treated me like a criminal but it was just an oversight on my part. What of the coming inheritance will I need to report? I fear that will affect my daughter in the long term. Thanks!

Thu, 11/16/2017 - 18:22 Permalink

In reply to by Stacey (not verified)

Hi Stacey,

Hi Stacey,

If your daughter is on SSDI, it shouldn't affect her benefits. You should always report any additional income you receive to the SSA.

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 09:09 Permalink
Neal Gray (not verified)

I was involved in a major car

I was involved in a major car accident which left me disabled. I lost my job before that. My hospital was covered by Medicaid. If I get an inheritance can Medicare go after it? My accident was in 2004...please help on info.

Thu, 11/16/2017 - 21:19 Permalink
Grady (not verified)

I am on SSDI and a friend

I am on SSDI and a friend passed away and he had named me the sucessor trustee. I have retained the help of the attorney that drew up the trust to make sure that everything was done correctly. The attorney stated that for being the trustee, I could get paid from the trust. If I did get paid, would that money affect my SSDI benefits?

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 14:25 Permalink

In reply to by Grady (not verified)

Hi Grady,

Hi Grady,
That may be considered work by the SSA's standards, so it may affect your benefits. It may be a good idea to contact the SSA regarding this, you can do so by calling them at 1-800-772-1213.

Mon, 11/20/2017 - 09:45 Permalink
Diane (not verified)

I am on SSI and may possibly

I am on SSI and may possibly be recieving an inheritance, how will this affect me?

Sun, 11/19/2017 - 20:40 Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

Will my acceptance of

Will my acceptance of inheritance from my mother affect my Social Security Disability checks? My social security is based on my work credits. Will I still be able to receive Medicare?

Wed, 11/29/2017 - 20:55 Permalink

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)



I am not sure how it would affect your medicare, but it won't affect your SSDI.

Thu, 11/30/2017 - 09:55 Permalink
Theresa And Dy… (not verified)

My son is 18 he’s autism

My son is 18 he’s autism level 1 and receives benefits of 183 a month he is going to be receiving an inheratence of about 20 k in the next few was will this terminate or suspend his benefits. I am his payee and the check will be made to him is he allowed to have this money with out effecting his benefits out to him

Thu, 11/30/2017 - 09:59 Permalink

In reply to by Theresa And Dy… (not verified)

Hi Theresa,

Hi Theresa,
It may be considered income for the month that he receives it, and a financial resource for the months after. He may be able to put it into a special needs trust, as those trusts are exempt from SSI income and resource limits.

Thu, 11/30/2017 - 15:18 Permalink
Mindy (not verified)

Can the government take you&

Can the government take you're inheritance (money or land) if you have been receiving disability and medicare?

Mon, 12/04/2017 - 15:03 Permalink

In reply to by Mindy (not verified)

Hi Mindy,

Hi Mindy,

They won't be able to seize your assets (i.e inheritance, or property) just because you receive SSDI or medicare.

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 09:46 Permalink
Joann (not verified)

I am interested in finding

I am interested in finding out I am on SSDI and my live in boyfriend is expecting an inheritance... I am wondering if this inheritance needs to be reported and if it will affect my SSDI.. I will anticipate a answer in the near future... thanks again .... Joann

Sat, 12/09/2017 - 19:01 Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

My parents died 2015 n we got

My parents died 2015 n we got money from their insurance. Will this effect my disability check. Do we have to report it n do we have to pass taxes on it

Sat, 12/09/2017 - 23:11 Permalink
Glenda (not verified)

If someone who is on

If someone who is on Disability& Medicad..& they get a large inheritance from a trust , will that effect their disability& Medicare ....in Illinois.

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:52 Permalink

In reply to by Glenda (not verified)

Hi Glenda,

Hi Glenda,

I would recommend speaking with a representative from your local Medicare office.

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 17:01 Permalink
Rachel (not verified)

I receive SSI for a child. I

I receive SSI for a child. I own and am living in my current home making mortgage payments. My friend purchased a home and has put me on the deed but he is the only one required to make payment since its a VA financed loan. He has to make payments and won't pay it off until 2048. Will this affect my SSI payments?

Sat, 12/16/2017 - 23:19 Permalink
Jo (not verified)

If you are on SSDI and

If you are on SSDI and settled a lawsuit with a previous employer (portion of payment was back pay (W-2) and majority of balance was done on a W-9. Will this affect disability payments?

Thu, 12/28/2017 - 19:03 Permalink

In reply to by Jo (not verified)

Hi Jo,

Hi Jo,
Money received from settlements may not be counted as earned income for the purposes of SSDI, however it may be a good idea to contact the SSA regarding this, you can contact them at 1-800-772-1213.

Tue, 01/02/2018 - 16:28 Permalink
Anna Marie (not verified)

I'm on SSDI my parents

I'm on SSDI my parents want to give me $15000.00 to but a car . Will that affect my SSDI?

Thu, 12/28/2017 - 23:05 Permalink

In reply to by Anna Marie (not verified)

Hi Anna Marie,

Hi Anna Marie,
I can't really say, if you're receiving income-based benefits rather than benefits based off of your work record, your benefits may be affected. If you're receiving SSDI based off of your work record, that may not affect your benefits.

Tue, 01/02/2018 - 16:35 Permalink
Jordan (not verified)

I receive SSDI and just

I receive SSDI and just learned that my mother made me beneficiary of her city pension. After she passes, I will receive $550 per month for life. Will this affect my SSDI payments? My mother retired at 62 and receives Social Security of $1100 per month, so I am sure she paid SS taxes while she worked for 30 years.

Sat, 12/30/2017 - 23:24 Permalink

In reply to by Jordan (not verified)

Hi Jordan,

Hi Jordan,
That may not affect your benefits as that may be considered unearned income.

Wed, 01/03/2018 - 14:03 Permalink
momoftwo (not verified)

We are going to receive an

We are going to receive an inheritance from a recent death in the family. My two children receive SSI, if I inform Social Security when we get it and give them back the payments for the month in which it was received and then "get rid of it" in home improvements can the SSI resume the following month as normal?

Tue, 01/02/2018 - 14:29 Permalink

In reply to by momoftwo (not verified)

Hi there,

Hi there,
This is a tricky situation. If you notify the SSA and no longer have the funds after your ineligible month, you should be ok! Sounds like you have a good plan, but you should definitely speak with someone from the SSA first to confirm.

Thu, 01/04/2018 - 14:28 Permalink
Lisa S (not verified)

Will monies received from

Will monies received from rental property affect my SSDI?

Mon, 01/08/2018 - 18:52 Permalink

In reply to by Lisa S (not verified)

Hi Lisa,

Hi Lisa,

You may want to double check with the SSA and make sure your monthly income does not exceed to the 2018 SGA limit.

Tue, 01/09/2018 - 09:22 Permalink
Eadie (not verified)

I will begin to receive

I will begin to receive inheritence via monthly disbursements from an irrevocable trust fund after my mother's recent death. This will be ongoing. Currently I'm on disability with my Medicare health plan being paid directly from that check before deposited. Will my be benefits or health insurance be affected either upon receiving that income now or later when it reverts to regular Social Security?
I see some posts where people refer to their income as SSI and as I understand "SSI" stands for "supplimental" income, not regular Social Security. Thank you.

Tue, 01/09/2018 - 08:26 Permalink

In reply to by Eadie (not verified)

Hi Eadie,

Hi Eadie,

I can't say for sure about your health insurance. You would have to speak with your provider regarding. If you are on SSDI, it will not be affected.

Tue, 01/09/2018 - 09:27 Permalink
Rick (not verified)

My sister in law has been in

My sister in law has been in ask for 20 plus years she is about to inherit 25000 ado we report this right away

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 12:34 Permalink
Kimberly (not verified)

My husband receives

My husband receives disability and is waiting a transplant of a heart if i receive an inheritance will it affect his disability

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 16:55 Permalink

In reply to by Kimberly (not verified)

Hi Kimberly,

Hi Kimberly,

It shouldn't but you should double check with the SSA first.

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 15:01 Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

What happens when a spouse

What happens when a spouse receives an inheritance and her husband is receiving ssdi will it affect his disability

Fri, 01/19/2018 - 13:34 Permalink

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi there,

Hi there,
If he's getting benefits based off of his work record, it should not affect his benefits.

Mon, 01/22/2018 - 09:21 Permalink
Isabel (not verified)

Will you lose ssdi benefits

Will you lose ssdi benefits if you inherit a house? and if not do you have to live in the house in order not to lose your benefits?

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 18:57 Permalink

Add new comment

Find Out If I Qualify for Benefits!