If your application for Social Security Disability benefits is pending, it may be some time before you begin receiving regular monthly disability payments from the Social Security Administration. During this waiting period, you may find it difficult to provide for your basic needs. Fortunately, in some circumstances, a disability applicant's financial needs can be helped with interim assistance payments.
Interim assistance is provided to Social Security Disability applicants by local state agencies. If you meet the determining criteria, you may be able to receive modest monthly payments to assist with your basic living expenses while you wait for an approval of your Social Security Disability claim.
To be eligible for interim assistance, you must meet all of the Adult Public Assistance criteria, except for the receipt of Supplemental Security Income. You do, however, have to apply for disability benefits in order to be eligible for the interim assistance program. You will only be approved for interim assistance if it appears that you are likely to be approved for Social Security Disability benefits.
If you are approved for interim assistance payments, you must enter into an interim assistance agreement with the agency in charge of issuing your interim assistance benefits. This agreement states that you will repay the money that you receive in interim assistance benefits from the back payment that you receive from the Social Security Administration. This is done by completing the Interim Assistance Reimbursement authorization form.
Interim assistance can be viewed as an “advance” of your benefits. When you are awarded your disability benefits, the amount of the interim assistance payments that you have received will be deducted from the back payment that you receive from the Social Security Administration. For example, if you receive a total of $1,000 in interim assistance and are awarded $2,500 in back payments, you would receive $1,500 of the $2,500 and $1,000 would go to pay back the interim assistance benefits you received.