Answers about the $250 Social Security recovery (stimulus) payment for 2009

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act provides for a one-time payment of $250 to Social Security and Supplemental Security Income, or (SSI) beneficiaries, as well as those who receive Railroad Retirement and Veterans benefits.

Here are answers to questions about this payment.

Q. Who will receive a one-time economic recovery payment from Social Security?

A. Nearly 55 million Social Security and SSI beneficiaries will receive a one-time payment of $250 each. To receive a payment, the beneficiary’s address of record must be in one of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, or the Northern Mariana Islands.

Q. When will I get the one-time payment?

A. You should receive your $250 payment by late May 2009.

Q. What do I need to do to receive this payment?

A. You don't need to do anything in order to get this one-time payment. Social Security has all the information needed to get your payment to you.

Q. How will I get this payment?

A. Social Security will deliver your payment in one of the following ways:

  • If you receive your Social Security or SSI benefit payment by direct deposit in your bank, the SSA will deposit the $250 one-time payment in your bank. Direct Deposit is the fast, safe and most reliable way to receive monthly Social Security benefits.
  • If you get your Social Security or SSI benefit payment in the mail, SS will send your $250 one-time payment by mail.

OR

  • If your benefit goes directly to your Direct Express debit card, Social Security will deposit the $250 one-time payment to your debit card. They'll send your one-time economic recovery payment separately from your Social Security or SSI benefit; it won't be included with your monthly benefit payment.

Q. Will the one-time payment change the amount or delivery date of my regular Social Security or SSI benefit?

A. No. The one-time payment will be a separate payment, which will not be included in your regular monthly benefit payment.

Q. Can I get more than one payment?

A. No. You will get only one $250 payment. So if you now receive more than one type of benefit -- for instance, some combination of Social Security, SSI, Railroad Retirement and Veterans benefits -- you will get only one payment of $250.

Q. What if I'm married?

A. If you're married and both you and your spouse get Social Security or SSI, you each will receive a one-time $250 payment.

Q. Can children get this one-time payment?

A. That depends. Children who receive Social Security benefits are NOT eligible for the one-time payment. But disabled adult children (over age 18) who get Social Security are eligible for the one-time payment, and so are children who receive SSI.

Q. If I owe money to the federal or state government, will that money reduce my one-time payment?

A. Yes. The law requires the Treasury Department to offset the one-time payments to collect delinquent child support and debts owed to state and federal agencies. The one-time payment will not be used to collect Social Security or SSI benefit overpayments.

Q. Does this payment count as taxable income?

A. No. Your one-time payment does NOT count as income for tax purposes or for SSI.

Q. How can I find out more about my payment?

A. This spring, Social Security will be sending letters to eligible beneficiaries with additional information about the one-time payment. Again, you do not need to do anything to receive your payment.

Q. What if I don't receive my payment?

A. If you don’t receive it by June 4, you may contact Social Security.

Q. I became eligible for benefits in February 2009. Will I receive the one-time economic recovery payment?

A. No. Only individuals eligible for Social Security, SSI, Veterans, or Railroad Retirement benefits at any time during the months of November 2008, December 2008, or January 2009 may be eligible for the one-time payment.

Q. If I have a representative payee, who will receive my one-time economic recovery payment?

A. If you have a representative payee, SSA will deliver your one-time payment to your representative payee. Your representative payee is required by law to use the payment for your benefit.

Q. Will the one-time economic recovery payment count as a resource for SSI?

A. The payment will not count as a resource in the month you receive it or the following 9 months. For example, if you receive the one-time payment in May 2009, it would not count as a resource from May 2009 through February 2010. If you still have this money after February 2010, it will be counted as a resource starting in March 2010.

Q. Will the one-time economic recovery payment count as income when determining eligibility for Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug plan costs?

A. No, it will not.

Q. Will the one-time economic recovery payment count as earnings when determining eligibility for Social Security disability benefits?

A. No. The one-time economic recovery payment will not count as income or earnings for Social Security disability benefits.

Q. Who is not eligible for this payment?

A. In most cases, the following individuals will not receive the one-time payment:

  • Anyone living outside of the United States or its territories;
  • Individuals who no longer are lawfully present in the United States;
  • Individuals whose benefits have been suspended under the law for giving false or misleading statements;
  • Social Security beneficiaries who are minor children;
  • SSI beneficiaries who receive benefits at a reduced rate of $30 because they live in a medical treatment facility (such as a nursing home or hospital) and Medicaid pays over 50% of the cost of their care;
  • Individuals only entitled to Medicare and not to Social Security or SSI benefits; and
  • Prisoners, fugitive felons, and probation and parole violators.

Q. What should I do if someone calls or E-mails me asking for personal information to process my payment?

A. Do not provide your personal information to anyone requesting it to process your payment. If you are unsure about the identity of someone claiming to be a Social Security employee, call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) to verify the call. You may report suspicious activity involving Social Security programs and operations at the Social Security Fraud Hotline website or by phone at 1-800-269-0271 (TTY 1-866-501-2101).

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Comments

Stimulus check for couples

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

Sounds like your wife currently is not receiving Social Security benefits in her name. In this case, it is unlikely you will receive two checks.

If you are married and both you and your spouse are receiving benefits from Social Security or SSI, you each will get the one-time payment.

http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/ssa.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_fa...

Daughter and stimulus check

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

Is your daughter still in high school? Children under the age of 18 (19 if still in high school) who receive Social Security benefits are NOT eligible for the one-time payment.
http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/ssa.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_fa...

Stimulus check letter

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

Based on your statement, you sound like you are eligible for the check. Note you must live in the US (or territories) to receive the check.

Disabled children on SSI and check

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

Disabled children receiving SSI are eligible for the one-time payment.

http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/ssa.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_fa...

Railroad Retirement benefits

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

I see nothing in your statement that would preclude receiving the check.

Individuals eligible for Social Security, SSI, Veterans, or Railroad Retirement benefits at any time during the months of November 2008, December 2008, or January 2009 may be eligible for the one-time payment.

Whether you work(ed) or not is not a factor in receipt of the check.

If eligible, you will receive your one-time payment from the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). You don't have to do anything in order to receive your payment. You can visit www.rrb.gov or call 1-877-772-5772 (1-877-RRB-5RRB) (TTY 1-312-751-4701) for more information.

Stimulus check and timing

April 21, 2009 by David Luhman

Based on your statement, it is likely you will receive a check. Individuals eligible for Social Security, benefits at any time during the months of November 2008, December 2008, or January 2009 may be eligible for the one-time payment.

the stimulus payment

April 21, 2009 by Guest

last year me an my wife got $300, this yr the amount is $250, i m on DSS an my wife is my beneficiary, she does not work, but she s my dependant, will the stimulus be $250 or $500

stimulas check

April 21, 2009 by Guest

will i recive a payment of 250$ if we have social security for fathers death benifits? we did not recieve last years because his grandma he lived with him but she did not have custody of him we do now since august.

I am 63 years old, started

April 21, 2009 by Guest

I am 63 years old, started receiving social security benefits at age 62.
Will I receive the $250 stimulus payment?
My husband is 65, and has received his notice. I have not. Were all notices mailed at the same time?

Receiving SS Recovery stimulus payment

April 21, 2009 by Guest

I'm inquiring to see if my Husband will receive theSS stimuluscheck
I received a notice but he did'nt receive aletter.He's eligible.
Weboth receive SS checks and he also receives a Vacheck.
He just wants to know if he'll receive acheck since he did'nt receive
Aletter. Please respond.
Thank You

Daughter's check?

April 21, 2009 by Guest

My daughter is 18 and is recieving a check from her father's disability payments until May2009. Will she recieve the $250 check?

Stimulus check

April 21, 2009 by Guest

I filed for social security benefits at age 62. I have been receiving benefits since January 2008. Am I eligible to receive the one-time $250 payment from the stimulus package? If so, when will I receive it? I have not yet received a letter of notification.

Stimuli Payment Notice

April 21, 2009 by Guest

Others I know recieved a letter from social security telling them about their one time payment and then some other including my self have not yet recieved that letter from SS. What does that mean if you have not recieved a letter from SS. And we recieve Social Security or SSI Benefits?

children one time payment

April 21, 2009 by Guest

what about the chidren on ssi the answer said adult children on ssa do get it and that children on ssi would also get it does that mean that all children on ssi or only adult children

government stimulus check

April 21, 2009 by Guest

My husband is receiving retirement payments from the railroad, his ageis 67. He also had a small part time job during the past year. He now is not working at this part time job. Because of his part time employment during the year 2008, and paid taxes on this amount, will he receive the $250.00 stimulus check? I also am receiving a railroad retirement benefit check. My age is 63 and I began receiving the railroad retirement checks at age 62. I was also employed by a school system until October 1, 2008. I am now receiving both retirement benefits from the state I worked for and also railroad benefits. Will I also be eligible for the $250.00 stimulus check? Neither of us have received a letter from the Social Security Office as of this time.

Married couples

April 21, 2009 by Guest

What about the married people that's supposed to get the $400.00 or the $800.00? Are we still going to recieve that, and when should we receive it?

Deceased Husbands SS

April 21, 2009 by Guest

I opted to take my deceased husbands SS instead of mine. I started collecting January 2009 and got my first check in Feb. Am I entitled to the $250 stimulus check?

owed off-set student loan

April 21, 2009 by Guest

I already get my monthly disability check off-set to repay back loan. Will they also keep this 250.00 stimulus check as an off-set payment?

Please contact your office directly for this

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Please contact your local office for this. The $250 stimulus check should be in addition to other Social Security benefits you may be receiving.

Withholding income tax on stimulus check

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

I do not know if there will be withholding on the stimulus check. I suspect not as the stimulus check is not countable as gross income for income tax purposes.

http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/ssa.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_fa...

Returning stimulus check

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

If you shouldn't have received a stimulus check, but received one anyway, please return it to your local office :
http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/ssa.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_fa...

"Resources" and SSI

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Resources are things you own such as cash, bank accounts, personal property and vehicles.

http://www.ssa.gov/ssi/text-resources-ussi.htm

Children and stimulus check

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Yes, my interpretation is that Social Security beneficiaries who are minor children will not receive a check.

SSI and review of bank accounts

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Please see this excerpt from an SSA publication :

Reviewing your case

The law requires that we look at every SSI case from time to time to make sure that people getting payments should still get them and are getting the right amount. We will tell you when it is time for your review. The review will be done by mail, phone or in person in the Social Security office.

We will ask you the same kind of questions you answered when you applied for SSI. We will need information about your income, your resources, your living arrangements and your bank accounts. Keep savings or checking account statements you get from your bank.

http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/11011.html

Stimulus check to pay back student loan

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

That depends on the nature of the student loan. The law requires the Treasury Department to offset the one-time payments to collect delinquent child support and debts owed to state and federal agencies.

Stimulus check and taxes

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Your one-time payment does NOT count as income for tax purposes or for SSI.

Stimulus payment and Social Security Disability

April 20, 2009 by David Luhman

Yes, in general, if you receive SSD, you will receive the $250 check.

Cut in benefits

April 20, 2009 by Guest

I would like to know why our benefits were cut. Is this because of the stimulus payment?

Quarterly payment of taxes

April 20, 2009 by Guest

Will the government without the $250 if I am paying my taxes quarterly?

STIMULIS PAMENT

April 20, 2009 by Guest

IF A PERSON IS OVER 65 AND RECEIVES THE LETTER FROM SOCIAL SECURITY SAYING YOU WILL RECEIVE THE $250 SOCIAL SECURITY RECOVERY PAYMENT,BUT YOU ARE A RETIRED TEACHER AND DON"T RECEIVE SOCIAL SECURITY AND YOU RECEIVE THE PAYMENT,WHAT SHOULD YOU DO.

Somewhat Confused

April 20, 2009 by Guest

Whta does it mean when you say......."if you still have this money after Feb. 2010, it will be counted as a resource starting in March 2010." What does resource mean? Please explain. Thank you.

stimulous

April 20, 2009 by Guest

I have a ten year old child who receives money under my ssd does that mean she won't receive the 250.00

9 month time limit on spending $250.00 payment?

April 20, 2009 by Guest

I'm confused on the 9 month limit. How will the SSI know if I tranfer the payment to my savings accunt or spent the payment. Please advise as the answer to this question.

pay back student loan

April 20, 2009 by Guest

last payment i have to pay my money on the student loan so i would like to know is the money going to them again.

Social Security Disability

April 19, 2009 by Guest

If I receive Social Security Disability .Will I have to pay back the 250.00 dollar stimulus money and will I have to claim it on my taxes next year?

stimuluspayment

April 19, 2009 by Guest

if someone is on socialsecuritydisability will they get astimulus

debts owed to state

April 18, 2009 by Guest

how do i find out if i owe the state money is there a wed site that i could go to find out

question on previous comment

April 18, 2009 by Guest

What does that mean = if you still have the money after February 2010, it will be counted as a resourse starting in March 2010?

IN MY ORIGINAL POST I SAID IRS

April 18, 2009 by Guest

I REALLY DON T KNOW OF THE SOURCE IF IT WAS THE IRS, OR THE TREASURY, I KNOW THAT I GOT IT BECAUSE MY WIFE IS A DEPENDANT, AN EACH AMERICAN THAT QUALIFIED GOT THE $300, HOUSEHOLDS FILING JOINTLY GOT $300 FOR EACH QUALIFING DEPENDANT

Paying stimulus payment back

April 17, 2009 by David Luhman

I'm not sure I understand the question. In general, you may spend the Social Security stimulus payment as you see fit. If you receive SSI, your benefits may be limited based on income or assets ("resources") you have. However, this stimulus payment will not count as a resource in the month you receive it or the following 9 months. For example, if you receive the one-time payment in May 2009, it would not count as a resource from May 2009 through February 2010. If you still have this money after February 2010, it will be counted as a resource starting in March 2010.

little confused

April 17, 2009 by Guest

last year the IRS , gave out the stimulis, I,m on DSS, my wife is a housewife age 49, she is my benificiary but does not receive no income, last year we both received $300 each, i know the amount this year is $250, as we both filed jointly when we were required to pay taxes, would nt she be eligible for the $250 too

pay money back

April 17, 2009 by Guest

i get the money.can i spend it.and do i have to pay it back to you.what is resourse.

Non-collectible IRS status

April 15, 2009 by David Luhman

The law requires the Department of the Treasury to deduct delinquent child support and debts owed to state and Federal agencies from the one-time payment. The one-time payment will not be used to collect Social Security or SSI benefit overpayments.

question

April 15, 2009 by Guest

If I am on non-collective status with the IRS because I am on SSDI will I still receive the one-time payment?