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Requirements and options for reporting wages for SSI benefits

The Supplemental Security Income program of the Social Security Administration provides financial benefits to qualifying individuals who are disabled and who have limited income. Because the program is contingent on income, however, recipients of SSI benefits who also work, or who have family members who work, must regularly report the wages earned each month. It is important to report wages consistently and accurately so that the benefits received from the SSI program are neither too large nor too small.

In general, recipients of SSI benefits must report wages via phone, in writing or in person at a local office. For certain individuals, however, the option exists to report wages via an automated phone system. This is referred to as the Supplemental Security Income Telephone Wage Reporting method. Another option available to certain individuals is the Mobile Wage Reporting system that uses an app installed on an Apple or Android smartphone to facilitate wage reporting.

The automated phone system and the mobile application are convenient ways for SSI benefits recipients to comply with their monthly reporting responsibility. People who are interested in taking advantage of these systems, however, should contact the local Social Security office to find out if they are eligible and get started. The timeframe for reporting wages is the same regardless of whether reporting via the automated phone system or mobile application or in writing or in person: wages for the prior month should be reported in the first six days of the following month.

In order to report wages using the mobile app or automated phone system, the reporter will need to have access to all of the information necessary to accurately report wages. This information includes the name and Social Security number of the person reporting the wages, the Social Security number of the relevant wage earner and the wage earner's total gross pay per month.

Source: Social Security Administration, "SSI Spotlight on the SSI Telephone Wage Reporting (SSITWR) System and the SSI Mobile Wage Reporting (SSIMWR) Application-2014 Edition," Accessed March 16, 2015

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